Choice with affirmative action

Date
2022-02-09
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Source Title
Management Science
Print ISSN
0025-1909
Electronic ISSN
1526-5501
Publisher
Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS)
Volume
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Pages
1 - 33
Language
English
Type
Article
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Abstract

A choice rule with affirmative action decides on the recipients of a limited number of identical objects by reconciling two objectives: respecting a priority ordering over the applicants and supporting a minority group. We extend the standard formulation of a choice problem by incorporating a type function and a priority ordering, and introduce monotonicity axioms on how a choice rule should respond to variations in these parameters. We show that monotonic and substitutable affirmative action rules are the ones that admit a bounded reserve representation. As a prominent class of choice rules that satisfy the monotonicity axioms, we characterize lexicographic affirmative action rules that are prevalent both in the literature and in practice. Our axiomatic approach provides a novel way to think about reserve systems and uncovers choice rules that go beyond lexicographic affirmative action rules.

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Keywords
Affirmative action, Bounded reserve representation, Lexicographic choice
Citation
Published Version (Please cite this version)