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On the Talmud division: equity and robustness

Louis de Mesnard ()

No 2008-07, LEG - Document de travail - Economie from LEG, Laboratoire d'Economie et de Gestion, CNRS, Université de Bourgogne

Abstract: The Talmud Division is a very old method of sharing developed by the rabbis in the Talmud and brought to the fore in the modern area some authors, among them are Aumann and Maschler. One compares the Talmud Division to other methods, mainly here the most popular, Aristotle’s Proportional Division, but also to the equal division. The Talmud Division is more egalitarian than the Proportional Division for small levels of estate and conversely and it protects the weakest –those who cannot place a non-zero claim–. This suggests that claimants may choose among the claiming methods depending on their interest, what implies a metagame. Unlike other methods as the Proportional Division, the Talmud Division is not robust because the solution depends on the order in which groups of claimants are formed, while it could be impossible to form coalitions without following the increasing order of claimants or to find a general agreement about what precise coalition must be chosen. For a larger number of claimants, fulfilling the order-preserving condition may oblige to backtrack for a very large number of steps what implies an unreasonable volume of computations. The paper discusses also of three generalizations of the Contested Garment method to three or more claimants.

Keywords: Division; Talmud; Aristotle; Contested Garment; Three Wives. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D31 D63 D71 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 26 pages
Date: 2008-10
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