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Ranking distributions of monotone attributes


  • Carmen Herrero

    () (Universidad de Alicante e IVIE)

  • Antonio Villar

    () (Department of Economics, Universidad Pablo de Olavide y European University Institute)


This paper refers to the ranking of densities that describe the distribution of an attribute in a given set of populations. The key elements of the problem are: (i) The distributions refer to ordered categorical data (e.g. health statuses, educational achievements, prestige positions, satisfaction levels); (ii) The evaluation of each distribution is relative to the others with which it is compared. We propose an evaluation method that is cardinal, complete and transitive, which based on the consistent application of the "willingness to pay" principle and the likelihood of getting better results when making a random extraction. A characterization of this method, in terms of simple properties, is provided.

Suggested Citation

  • Carmen Herrero & Antonio Villar, 2014. "Ranking distributions of monotone attributes," Working Papers 14.03, Universidad Pablo de Olavide, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:pab:wpaper:14.03

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Glenn Sheriff & Kelly B. Maguire, 2013. "Ranking Distributions of Environmental Outcomes Across Population Groups," NCEE Working Paper Series 201304, National Center for Environmental Economics, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, revised Aug 2013.
    2. Bellù, Lorenzo Giovanni & Liberati, Paolo, 2005. "Social Welfare Analysis of Income Distributions: Ranking Income Distributions with Crossing Generalised Lorenz Curves," MPRA Paper 30115, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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    Cited by:

    1. Ramón José Torregrosa Montaner, 2015. "Medición y evolución del sentimiento autonómico en España," Working Papers. Serie EC 2015-01, Instituto Valenciano de Investigaciones Económicas, S.A. (Ivie).

    More about this item


    Ranking distributions; categorical variables; willingness to pay; worth;

    JEL classification:

    • D00 - Microeconomics - - General - - - General
    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • H00 - Public Economics - - General - - - General

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