Choice, Rationality and Welfare Measurement
AbstractWe present a method for evaluating the welfare of a decision maker, based on observed choice data. Unlike the standard economic theory of revealed preference, our method can be used whether or not the observed choices are rational. Paralleling the standard theory we present a model for choice such that the observations arise "as if" they were the result of a specific decision making process. However, in place of the usual preference relation whose maximization induces the observations, we explain choice as arising from a compromise among a set of simultaneously held, conflicting preference relations. As in revealed preference theory, these simultaneously held preferences are inferred from the choice data and we use them as the basis to discuss the decision maker’s welfare. In general our method does not yield a unique set of explanatory preferences and therefore we characterize all the explanatory sets of preferences. We use this set to compute bounds on welfare changes. We show that some standard results of rational choice theory can be extended to irrational decision makers. The theory can be used to explore a number of context-dependent choice patterns found in psychological experiments.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government in its series Working Paper Series with number rwp07-054.
Date of creation: Nov 2007
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: 79 JFK Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
Web page: http://www.ksg.harvard.edu/research/working_papers/index.htm
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D01 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- David I. Laibson & Andrea Repetto & Jeremy Tobacman, 1998. "Self-Control and Saving for Retirement," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 29(1), pages 91-196.
- Paola Manzini & Marco Mariotti, 2004. "Rationalizing Boundedly Rational Choice," Microeconomics 0407005, EconWPA, revised 21 Jul 2005.
- Francoise Forges & Enrico Minelli, 2006.
"Afriat’s Theorem for General Budget Sets,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
1703, CESifo Group Munich.
- Francoise Forges & Enrico Minelli, 2006. "Afriat's Theorem for General Budget Sets," Working Papers ubs0609, University of Brescia, Department of Economics.
- Forges, Françoise & Minelli, Enrico, 2009. "Afriat's theorem for general budget sets," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/4099, Paris Dauphine University.
- Herbert E. Scarf & Ana Fostel & Michael J. Todd, 2004.
"Two New Proofs of Afriat's Theorem,"
Yale School of Management Working Papers
ysm377, Yale School of Management.
- M.J. Todd & A. Fostel & H.E. Scarf, 2004. "Two New Proofs of Afriat's Theorem," Econometric Society 2004 North American Summer Meetings 632, Econometric Society.
- Anna Fostel & Herbert E. Scarf & Michael J. Todd, 2003. "Two New Proofs of Afriat's Theorem," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1415, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Mas-Colell, Andreu & Whinston, Michael D. & Green, Jerry R., 1995. "Microeconomic Theory," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195102680.
- Saari, Donald G., 1989. "A dictionary for voting paradoxes," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 48(2), pages 443-475, August.
- Douglas Bernheim & Antonio Rangel, 2007.
"Beyond Revealed Preference Choice Theoretic Foundations for Behavioral Welfare Economics,"
07-031, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
- B. Douglas Bernheim & Antonio Rangel, 2008. "Beyond Revealed Preference: Choice Theoretic Foundations for Behavioral Welfare Economics," NBER Working Papers 13737, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Jose Apesteguia & Miguel A. Ballester, 2011.
"A Measure of Rationality and Welfare,"
573, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
- Jose Apesteguia & Miguel Angel Ballester, 2010. "A measure of rationality and welfare," Economics Working Papers 1220, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Sep 2011.
- Jose Apesteguia & Miguel Angel Ballester, 2010. "A Measure of Rationality and Welfare," Working Papers 467, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
- Eric Danan & Thibault Gajdos & Jean-Marc Tallon, 2010.
"Aggregating sets of von Neumann-Morgenstern utilities,"
UniversitÃ© Paris1 PanthÃ©on-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers)
- Danan, Eric & Gajdos, Thibault & Tallon, Jean-Marc, 2013. "Aggregating sets of von Neumann–Morgenstern utilities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 148(2), pages 663-688.
- Eric Danan & Thibault Gajdos & Jean-Marc Tallon, 2013. "Aggregating sets of von Neumann-Morgenstern utilities," UniversitÃ© Paris1 PanthÃ©on-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00788647, HAL.
- Jawwad Noor, 2011.
Boston University - Department of Economics - Working Papers Series
WP2011-038, Boston University - Department of Economics.
- Nakajima, Daisuke & Masatlioglu, Yusufcan, 2013. "Choice by iterative search," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 8(3), September.
- Dalton, P.S. & Ghosal, S., 2010. "Behavioral Decisions and Welfare (Replaces CentER DP 2010-22)," Discussion Paper 2010-143, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
- Yusufcan Masatlioglu & Daisuke Nakajima & Erkut Y. Ozbay, 2012.
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 102(5), pages 2183-2205, August.
- de Clippel, Geoffroy & Eliaz, Kfir, 2012.
"Reason-based choice: a bargaining rationale for the attraction and compromise effects,"
Econometric Society, vol. 7(1), January.
- Geoffroy de Clippel & Kfir Eliaz, 2009. "Reason-Based Choice: A Bargaining Rationale for the Attraction and Compromise Effects," Working Papers 2009-4, Brown University, Department of Economics.
- De Clippel, Geoffroy & Eliaz, Kfir, 2009. "Reason-Based Choice: A Bargaining Rationale for the Attraction and Compromise Effects," CEPR Discussion Papers 7414, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Raj Chetty, 2009. "The Simple Economics of Salience and Taxation," NBER Working Papers 15246, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Ivan Soraperra, 2009. "Revealed Preferences, Choices, and Psychological Indexes," Working Papers 643, Queen Mary, University of London, School of Economics and Finance.
- Sandroni, Alvaro & Cherepavov, Vadim & Feddersen, Timothy, 2013. "Rationalization," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 8(3), September.
- Attila Ambrus & Kareen Rozen, 2012.
"Rationalizing Choice with Multi-Self Models,"
12-11, Duke University, Department of Economics.
- Attila Ambrus & Kareen Rozen, 2012. "Rationalizing Choice with Multi-Self Models," Levine's Working Paper Archive 786969000000000512, David K. Levine.
- Attila Ambrus & Kareen Rozen, 2008. "Rationalizing Choice with Multi-Self Models," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1670, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University, revised May 2012.
- Attila Ambrus & Kareen Rozen, 2008. "Revealed Conflicting Preferences," Levine's Working Paper Archive 122247000000002161, David K. Levine.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.