In consumer preference studies, it is common to seek a complete ranking of a variety of, say N, alternatives or treatments. Unfortunately, as N increases, it becomes progressively more confusing and undesirable for respondents to rank all N alternatives simultaneously. Moreover, the investigators may only be interested in consumers’ top few choices. Therefore, it is desirable to accommodate the setting where each survey respondent ranks only her/his most preferred k (k < N) alternatives. In this paper, we propose a simple procedure to test the independence of N alternatives and the top-k ranks, such that the value of k can be predetermined before securing a set of partially ranked data or be at the discretion of the investigator in the presence of complete ranking data. The asymptotic distribution of the proposed test under root-n local alternatives is established. We demonstrate our procedure with two real data sets.
Journal of Nonparametric Statistics 29(2), p.213-230