© 2013

The Gini Methodology

A Primer on a Statistical Methodology


Part of the Springer Series in Statistics book series (SSS, volume 272)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Theory

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 9-9
    2. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 1-8
  3. Theory

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 9-9
    2. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 11-31
    3. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 51-73
    4. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 75-98
    5. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 99-132
    6. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 133-176
    7. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 177-195
    8. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 197-216
    9. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 217-232
    10. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 233-245
  4. Applications

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 247-247
    2. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 249-252
    3. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 253-273
    4. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 275-299
    5. Shlomo Yitzhaki, Edna Schechtman
      Pages 343-364

About this book


Gini's mean difference (GMD) was first introduced by Corrado Gini in 1912 as an alternative measure of variability. GMD and the parameters which are derived from it (such as the Gini coefficient or the concentration ratio) have been in use in the area of income distribution for almost a century. In practice, the use of GMD as a measure of variability is justified whenever the investigator is not ready to impose, without questioning, the convenient world of normality. This makes the GMD of critical importance in the complex research of statisticians, economists, econometricians, and policy makers.

This book focuses on imitating analyses that are based on variance by replacing variance with the GMD and its variants. In this way, the text showcases how almost everything that can be done with the variance as a measure of variability, can be replicated by using Gini. Beyond this, there are marked benefits to utilizing Gini as opposed to other methods. One of the advantages of using Gini methodology is that it provides a unified system that enables the user to learn about various aspects of the underlying distribution. It also provides a systematic method and a unified terminology.

Using Gini methodology can reduce the risk of imposing assumptions that are not supported by the data on the model.  With these benefits in mind the text uses the covariance-based approach, though applications to other approaches are mentioned as well.


ANOGI ANOVA Economic models GMD Gini coefficient Gini's mean difference Ordinary Least Squares Regression

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Central Bureau of StatisticsJerusalemIsrael
  2. 2.Dept. Industrial EngineeringBen-Gurion University of the NegevBeer-ShevaIsrael

About the authors

Shlomo Yitzhaki received his B.A. in Economics and Statistics from The Hebrew University, and his M.A. in Economics Cum Laude and Ph.D. from The Hebrew University. He is currently Government Statistician at the Central Bureau of Statistics, Israel and Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Economics, at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem.  Shlomo Yitzhaki was the recipient of the annual prize of the Israeli Data Processing  Association in 1974 for the construction of a Tax Model. Besides significant public appointments with the Israeli government, he was a consutant at the World Bank and held visiting scholar positions at Harvard University, Falk Institute, and the Hoover Institution.  Shlomo Yitzhaki has served on the board of many prominent economic journals including: Economics Bulletin, National Tax Journal, The Journal of Economic Inequality, Review of Income and Wealth, and European Journal of Political Economy.

Edna Schechtman received a B.Sc. in Mathematics and Statistics, Hebrew University of Jerusalem (1971); M.A. in Statistics, Hebrew university (1976); Ph.D. in Statistics, Ohio State University (1980). She is a professor of Statistics at Ben Gurion University, Israel. Her main research interests are in the field of measures based on the Gini index as well as in applied Statistics in various areas such as medicine, road safety, quality control and more. She published over 100 papers in the professional literature. Professor Schechtman was the president o

f the Israeli Statistical Association. She recently spent 6 months at Stern business school at NYU and one semester at the department of Statistics at Berkeley as a visiting scholar and is a frequent visitor of the department of Statistics at Texas A&M university.


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“This book represents a useful primer on the Gini methodology area. It is recommended to all readers who are interested in learning more about econometrics and welfare economics, particularly Gini regressions, Gini-based parameters, inference purposes with many empirical applications.” (Ndéné Ka and Stéphane Mussard, The Journal of Economic Inequality, Vol. 13, 2015)

“The book The Gini methodology by S. Yitzhaki and E. Schechtman is based on Gini’s Mean Deviation (GMD) and the methodology based on it. … To a student acquainted with the usual methods of statistics, the book provides an interesting alternative technique which makes for very good reading. Even at an advanced level, it provides a refreshing perspective through which the traditional methods can examined.” (Sugata Sen Roy, Mathematical Reviews, February, 2014)

"In recent decades we have seen a growing interest of scholars of different cultural background on the results and problems related to Corrado Gini’s scientific production and in particular on the mean difference (GMD) and his famous “concentration ratio” also known as Gini inequality index or Gini coefficient (GI). Now, these scholars have a fresh and clear source from which to draw information and ideas to satiate their thirst for knowledge by reading the very interesting and stimulating book “The G

ini methodology: a primer on a statistical methodology” authored by Shlomo Yitzhaki and Edna Schechtman and published in January 2013 by Springer.
It is a book that addresses the theoretical, methodological and applicative aspects related to a set of measures based on the GMD and the GI. The book proposes solutions, but also invites to make further analysis, to address problems not yet resolved, to find alternatives to some aspects not yet fully analyzed and to suggest new applications."

(Giovanni Maria Giorgi, Metron, Vol. 71 (2) 2013)