Budget-Balance, Fairness and Minimal Manipulability
Series/Report no.Cahier de recherche #2010-09
A common real-life problem is to fairly allocate a number of indivisible objects and a fixed amount of money among a group of agents. Fairness requires that each agent weakly prefers his consumption bundle to any other agent’s bundle. Under fairness, efficiency is equivalent to budget-balance (all the available money is allocated among the agents). Budget-balance and fairness in general are incompatible with non-manipulability (Green and Laffont, 1979). We propose a new notion of the degree of manipulability which can be used to compare the ease of manipulation in allocation mechanisms. Our measure counts for each problem the number of agents who can manipulate the rule. Given this notion, the main result demonstrates that maximally linked fair allocation rules are the minimally manipulable rules among all budget-balanced and fair allocation mechanisms. Such rules link any agent to the bundle of a pre-selected agent through indifferences (which can be viewed as indirect egalitarian equivalence).