A note on the posterior inference for the Yule–Simon distribution

Fabrizio Leisen*, Luca Rossini, Cristiano Villa

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


The Yule–Simon distribution has been out of the radar of the Bayesian community, so far. In this note, we propose an explicit Gibbs sampling scheme when a Gamma prior is chosen for the shape parameter. The performance of the algorithm is illustrated with simulation studies, including count data regression, and a real data application to text analysis. We compare our proposal to the frequentist counterparts showing better performance of our algorithm when a small sample size is considered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1179-1188
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of statistical computation and simulation
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 13 Apr 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • count data regression
  • data augmentation
  • text analysis
  • Yule–Simon distribution


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