hero working papers

A Generalized Index of Fractionalization

Number: 313
Year: 2006
Author(s): Walter Bossert,Conchita DAmbrosio andEliana La Ferrara
The goal of this paper is to characterize a measure of diversity among individu-
als, which we call generalized fractionalization index, that uses information on similarities
among individuals. We show that the generalized index is a natural extension of the
widely used ethno-linguistic fractionalization index and is alsosimple tocompute. The
paper offers some empirical illustrations on how the new index can be operationalized and
what difference it makes as compared to standard indices. These applications pertain to
the pattern of diversity in the United States across states. Journal of Economic Literature

Keywords: Diversity, Similarity, Ethno-Linguistic Fractionalization
JEL codes: C43, D63