Christopher P. Chambers, Alan D. Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We investigate a normative theory of incomplete preferences in the context of preliminary screening procedures. We introduce a theory of ranking in the presence of objectively incomparable marginal contributions (apples and oranges). Our theory recommends benchmarking, a method under which an individual is deemed more accomplished than another if and only if she has achieved more benchmarks, or important accomplishments. We show that benchmark rules are characterized by four axioms: transitivity, monotonicity, incomparability of marginal gains, and incomparability of marginal losses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)485-504
Number of pages20
JournalTheoretical Economics
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2018 The Authors.


  • Benchmarking
  • apples and oranges
  • axioms
  • closure operator
  • homomorphisms
  • incompleteness
  • measurement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (all)


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