Revealed Preference Analysis of School Choice Models
Preferences for schools are important determinants of equitable access to high-quality education, effects of expanded choice on school improvement and school choice mechanism design. Standard methods for estimating consumer preferences are not applicable in education markets because students do not always get their first choice school. This review describes recently developed methods for using rich data from a school choice mechanism to estimate student preferences. Our objectives are to present a unifying framework for these methods and to help applied researchers decide which techniques to use. After laying out methodological issues, we provide an overview of empirical results obtained using these models and discuss some open questions.
We thank Yinghua He, Margaux Luflade, Yusuke Narita and Peng Shi for helpful comments. A special thanks to Parag Pathak for his contributions to the research described in this article, and for his collaboration and guidance. Agarwal acknowledges the support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation (FG-2019-11484). The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Nikhil Agarwal & Paulo Somaini, 2020. "Revealed Preference Analysis of School Choice Models," Annual Review of Economics, vol 12(1).