Essential alternatives and freedom rankings
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- Puppe, C. & Xu, Y. Soc Choice Welf (2010) 35: 669. doi:10.1007/s00355-010-0457-6
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We study the problem of ranking opportunity sets in terms of freedom of choice. The analysis is based on the notion of essential alternatives introduced in Puppe (J Econ Theory 68:174–199, 1996). An alternative in an opportunity set is called essential if by deleting it, the reduced opportunity set offers less freedom than the original set. We provide an axiomatic characterization of the ranking according to which an opportunity set offers more freedom than another opportunity set if its share of essential elements in their union is larger.