Endogenous preferential treatment in centralized admissions
Y. Stephen Chiu
We study a model of centralized admissions in which schools are allowed to pre-commit to admitting qualified applicants who rank them as their top choices over more qualified applicants who do not. A less popular school may use the pre-commitment to steal applicants who otherwise would not choose it as their top choice (the stealing motive); a popular school may use the pre-commitment to prevent its own applicants from being stolen (the preemptive motive). We identify the conditions for these two motives to exist. We also clarify the relationship of this phenomenon with that of pre-arrangement of school places. Copyright (c) 2009, RAND.
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