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Chapter 4 Measuring Inequality in Life Chances with Ordinal Variables

Inequality of Opportunity: Theory and Measurement

ISBN: 978-1-78052-034-6, eISBN: 978-1-78052-035-3

ISSN: 1049-2585

Publication date: 26 October 2011

Abstract

Purpose – We propose applying Reardon's approach to the measurement of ordinal segregation to the study of inequality in life chances in the case of ordinal variables. We also propose additional measures of inequality in life chances in such a case.

Methodology – We state the desirable properties of measures of inequality in life chances when the variable under study is ordinal and check which properties are fulfilled by the various indices examined in this chapter.

Findings – All the indices defined in this chapter seem suitable for the analysis of inequality in life chances with ordinal variables but we found some trade-off between indices fulfilling the population composition invariance and those fulfilling the group replication invariance.

Originality – Besides extending the indices suggested by Reardon to the study of inequality of life chances, we propose, to analyze this issue, two additional sets of indices based on the notion of distributional dissimilarity.

Keywords

Citation

Silber, J. and Yalonetzky, G. (2011), "Chapter 4 Measuring Inequality in Life Chances with Ordinal Variables", Gabriel Rodríguez, J. (Ed.) Inequality of Opportunity: Theory and Measurement (Research on Economic Inequality, Vol. 19), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 77-98. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1049-2585(2011)0000019007

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited