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Modelling the effect of subject-specific covariates in paired comparison studies with an application to university rankings

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Preference decisions will usually depend on the characteristics of both the judges and the objects being judged. In the analysis of paired comparison data concerning European universities and students' characteristics, it is demonstrated how to incorporate subject-specific information into Bradley-Terry-type models. Using this information it is shown that preferences for universities and therefore university rankings are dramatically different for different groups of students. A log-linear representation of a generalized Bradley-Terry model is specified which allows simultaneous modelling of subject- and object-specific covariates and interactions between them. A further advantage of this approach is that standard software for fitting log-linear models, such as GLIM, can be used.

Keywords: Bradley-Terry model; Log-linear model; Object-specific covariate; Paired comparisons; Subject-specific covariate; University rankings

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Vienna University of Economics and Business Administration, Austria

Publication date: 1998-04-01

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