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Separability and AggregationThe Collected Works of W. M. Gorman, Volume I$
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W. M. Gorman, C. Blackorby, and A. F. Shorrocks

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198285212

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: November 2003

DOI: 10.1093/0198285213.001.0001

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Community Preference Fields

Community Preference Fields

(p.235) 15 Community Preference Fields
Separability and Aggregation

W. M. Gorman (Contributor Webpage)

, C. Blackorby, A. F. Shorrocks
Oxford University Press

This is Gorman's first published paper and was published in Econometrica 21 in 1953. A series of formal relationships between community indifference maps and utility possibility maps are stated and it is proved that a given system of personal indifference maps yields a unique community indifference map if, and only if, the personal Engel curves are parallel straight lines for different individuals at the same prices (Engel curves are curves showing the relationship between income level and spending on the consumption of some good, at a given price). The most general method of constructing such a set of indifference maps is discovered, and it appears that the utility possibility map can then be written in the form Σu = constant, where u is the utility index. Various applications are discussed.

Keywords:   community indifference maps, community preference fields, consumption, Engel curves, linear Engel curves, personal Engel curves, personal indifference maps, utility indices, utility possibility maps

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