Social Choice and Welfare

, Volume 50, Issue 4, pp 625–661 | Cite as

Estimating capabilities with random scale models: women’s freedom of movement

  • L. Andreassen
  • M. L. Di TommasoEmail author
Original Paper


In Sen’s capability approach well-being is evaluated not only in terms of functionings (what they do and who they are) but also in terms of capabilities (what people are free to do and to be). It implies that individuals with the same observed functionings may have different well-being because their choice sets (i.e. capabilities) are different. We utilise a Random Scale Model to measure the latent capability of Italian women to move based on observations of their realized choices. We demonstrate that such models can offer a suitable framework for measuring how individuals are restricted in their capabilities. Our estimations show that the percentage of women predicted to be restricted in their freedom of movement (have restricted capability sets) is 23–25%. If all women were unconstrained, our model predicts that 15–17% of them would choose to do more activities.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Research DepartmentStatistics NorwayOsloNorway
  2. 2.Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de MartiisUniversity of TorinoTurinItaly
  3. 3.Collegio Carlo AlbertoMoncalieriItaly
  4. 4.Frisch Center for Economic ResearchOsloNorway

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