Inequality with Ordinal Data

32 Pages Posted: 28 Mar 2017

See all articles by Frank Cowell

Frank Cowell

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines (STICERD)

Emmanuel Flachaire

Aix-Marseille University

Date Written: April 2017

Abstract

The standard theory of inequality measurement assumes that the equalisand is a cardinal quantity, with known cardinalization. However, one often needs to make inequality comparisons where either the cardinalization is unknown or the underlying data are categorical. We propose an alternative approach to inequality analysis that is rigorous, has a natural interpretation, and embeds both the ordinal data problem and the well‐known cardinal data problem. We show how the approach can be applied to the inequality of happiness and of health status.

Suggested Citation

Cowell, Frank A. and Flachaire, Emmanuel, Inequality with Ordinal Data (April 2017). Economica, Vol. 84, Issue 334, pp. 290-321, 2017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2941850 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecca.12232

Frank A. Cowell (Contact Author)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines (STICERD) ( email )

Houghton Street
London WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom
+44 (0)171-955 7277 (Phone)
+44 (0)171-242 2357 (Fax)

Emmanuel Flachaire

Aix-Marseille University ( email )

3 Avenue Robert Schuman,
France

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