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June 2014 Bayesian nonparametric Plackett–Luce models for the analysis of preferences for college degree programmes
François Caron, Yee Whye Teh, Thomas Brendan Murphy
Ann. Appl. Stat. 8(2): 1145-1181 (June 2014). DOI: 10.1214/14-AOAS717


In this paper we propose a Bayesian nonparametric model for clustering partial ranking data. We start by developing a Bayesian nonparametric extension of the popular Plackett–Luce choice model that can handle an infinite number of choice items. Our framework is based on the theory of random atomic measures, with the prior specified by a completely random measure. We characterise the posterior distribution given data, and derive a simple and effective Gibbs sampler for posterior simulation. We then develop a Dirichlet process mixture extension of our model and apply it to investigate the clustering of preferences for college degree programmes amongst Irish secondary school graduates. The existence of clusters of applicants who have similar preferences for degree programmes is established and we determine that subject matter and geographical location of the third level institution characterise these clusters.


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François Caron. Yee Whye Teh. Thomas Brendan Murphy. "Bayesian nonparametric Plackett–Luce models for the analysis of preferences for college degree programmes." Ann. Appl. Stat. 8 (2) 1145 - 1181, June 2014.


Published: June 2014
First available in Project Euclid: 1 July 2014

zbMATH: 06333791
MathSciNet: MR3262549
Digital Object Identifier: 10.1214/14-AOAS717

Keywords: Dirichlet process , gamma process , Mixture models , permutations , Ranking data

Rights: Copyright © 2014 Institute of Mathematical Statistics


Vol.8 • No. 2 • June 2014
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