with Kurt Schmidheiny, Journal of Urban Economics, 69(2): 214-222, 2011. See publication
On the Equivalence of Location Choice Models: Conditional Logit, Nested Logit and Poisson
It is well understood that the two most popular empirical models of location choice – conditional logit and Poisson – return identical coefficient estimates when the regressors are not individual specific. We show that these two models differ starkly in terms of their implied predictions. The conditional logit model represents a zero-sum world, in which one region’s gain is the other regions’ loss. In contrast, the Poisson model implies a positive-sum economy, in which one region’s gain is no other region’s loss. We also show that all intermediate cases can be represented as a nested logit model with a single outside option. The nested logit turns out to be a linear combination of the conditional logit and Poisson models. Conditional logit and Poisson elasticities mark the polar cases and can therefore serve as boundary values in applied research.