Shape analysis has special importance in the detection of manipulated redistricting, which is called gerrymandering. In most of the US states, this process is made by non-independent actors and often causes debates about partisan manipulation. The somewhat ambiguous concept of compactness is a standard criterion for legislative districts. In the literature, circularity is widely used as a measure of compactness, since it is a natural requirement for a district to be as circular as possible. In this paper, we introduce a novel and parameter-free circularity measure that is based on Hu moment invariants. This new measure provides a powerful tool to detect districts with abnormal shapes. We examined some districts of Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, and Utah over several consecutive periods and redistricting plans, and also compared the results with classical circularity indexes. We found that the fall of the average circularity value of the new measure indicates potential gerrymandering.
Authors:Tamás Ágh, Katalin Gáspár, Balázs Nagy, Matthieu Lehmann and Zoltán Kaló
The objective of this study is to quantify the value of a child born in 27 EU countries and Switzerland. The Human Capital (HC) approach was used to estimate the social benefit arising from an additional childbirth. The value of a newborn child was calculated by summing up the discounted value of all expected future gross earnings of the individual, including an imputed value for household production. The estimation takes into account life expectancy and the probability of being employed or in household production by age-groups. Input data was obtained from Eurostat and the Human Mortality Database. In 2012, the purchasing power parity adjusted present value (PV) of a newborn child was EUR 108.4 thousand in Bulgaria and EUR 803.6 thousand in Denmark. By applying the actual exchange rates, the difference between the lowest value (EUR 48.8 thousand in Bulgaria) and the highest value (EUR 1.1 million in Switzerland) was increased. The PV was highly sensitive to the discount rate. The fertility interventions are expected to gain popularities among other health priorities as a tool to counter generation ageing. However, in order to enhance fertility among other health priorities, policy-makers must take into account the full social value based on the local estimates.