Ordinal efficiency and dominated sets of assignments
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Using lotteries is a common tool for allocating indivisible goods. Since obtaining preferences over lotteries is often difficult, real-life mechanisms usually rely on ordinal preferences over deterministic outcomes. Bogomolnaia and Moulin (J. Econom. Theory 19 (2002) 623) show that the outcome of an ex post efficient mechanism may be stochastically dominated. They define a random assignment to be ordinally efficient if and only if it is not stochastically dominated. In this paper we investigate the relation between ex post efficiency and ordinal efficiency. We introduce a new notion of domination defined over sets of assignments and show that a lottery induces an ordinally efficient random assignment if and only if each subset of the full support of the lottery is undominated. © 2003 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.