Abstract

In the context of resource allocation on the basis of priorities, Ergin (2002) identifies a necessary and sufficient condition on the priority structure such that the student-optimal stable mechanism satisfies a consistency principle. Ergin (2002) formulates consistency as a local property based on a fixed population of agents and fixed resources -- we refer to this condition as local consistency and to his condition on the priority structure as local acyclicity. We identify a related but stronger necessary and sufficient condition (unit acyclicity) on the priority structure such that the student-optimal stable mechanism satisfies a more standard global consistency property. Next, we provide necessary and sufficient conditions for the student-optimal stable mechanism to satisfy converse consistency principles. We identify a necessary and sufficient condition (local shift-freeness) on the priority structure such that the student-optimal stable mechanism satisfies local converse consistency. Interestingly, local acyclicity implies local shift-freeness and hence the student-optimal stable mechanism more frequently satisfies local converse consistency than local consistency. Finally, in order for the student-optimal stable mechanism to be globally conversely consistent, one again has to impose unit acyclicity on the priority structure. Hence, unit acyclicity is a necessary and sufficient condition on the priority structure for the student-optimal stable mechanism to satisfy global consistency or global converse consistency.