March 2020

IZA DP No. 13057: Comparing Distributions of Ordinal Data

forthcoming in: The Stata Journal

To compare distributions of ordinal data such as individuals' responses on Likert-type scale variables summarizing subjective well-being, we should not apply the toolbox of methods developed for cardinal variables such as income. Instead we should use an analogous toolbox which takes account of the ordinal nature of the responses. This paper reviews these methods and introduces a new Stata command ineqord for undertaking distributional comparisons. As the empirical illustrations demonstrate, ineqord can be used for dominance checks as well as for estimation of indices of polarization and inequality.