Fair division of indivisible items

Steven Brams, Paul H. Edelman, Peter C. Fishburn

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    This paper analyzes criteria of fair division of a set of indivisible items among people whose revealed preferences are limited to rankings of the items and for whom no side payments are allowed. The criteria include refinements of Pareto optimality and envy-freeness as well as dominance-freeness, evenness of shares, and two criteria based on equally-spaced surrogate utilities, referred to as maxsum and equimax. Maxsum maximizes a measure of aggregate utility or welfare, whereas equimax lexicographically maximizes persons' utilities from smallest to largest. The paper analyzes conflicts among the criteria along with possibilities and pitfalls of achieving fair division in a variety of circumstances.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)147-180
    Number of pages34
    JournalTheory and Decision
    Volume55
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Sep 2003

    Fingerprint

    envy
    ranking
    welfare
    human being
    Fair division
    Pareto optimality
    Ranking
    Side payments
    Envy-freeness
    Revealed preference
    Pitfalls
    Evenness
    Person
    Revealed Preference
    Envy
    Optimality

    Keywords

    • Allocation of indivisible items
    • Envy-freeness
    • Fair division
    • Lexicographic maximin
    • Pareto optimality

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Economics and Econometrics
    • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

    Cite this

    Brams, S., Edelman, P. H., & Fishburn, P. C. (2003). Fair division of indivisible items. Theory and Decision, 55(2), 147-180. https://doi.org/10.1023/B:THEO.0000024421.85722.0a

    Fair division of indivisible items. / Brams, Steven; Edelman, Paul H.; Fishburn, Peter C.

    In: Theory and Decision, Vol. 55, No. 2, 09.2003, p. 147-180.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Brams, S, Edelman, PH & Fishburn, PC 2003, 'Fair division of indivisible items', Theory and Decision, vol. 55, no. 2, pp. 147-180. https://doi.org/10.1023/B:THEO.0000024421.85722.0a
    Brams, Steven ; Edelman, Paul H. ; Fishburn, Peter C. / Fair division of indivisible items. In: Theory and Decision. 2003 ; Vol. 55, No. 2. pp. 147-180.
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