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Revealed preference and indifferent selection

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  • Eric Danan

    ()
    (THEMA - Théorie économique, modélisation et applications - CNRS : UMR8184 - Université de Cergy Pontoise)

Abstract

It is shown that preferences can be constructed from observed choice behavior in a way that is robust to indifferent selection (i.e., the agent is indifferent between two alternatives but, nevertheless, is only observed selecting one of them). More precisely, a suggestion by Savage [Savage, L.J., 1954. The foundations of statistics. John Wiley and Sons] to reveal indifferent selection by considering small monetary perturbations of alternatives is formalized and generalized to a purely topological framework: preferences over an arbitrary topological space can be uniquely derived from observed behavior under the assumptions that they are continuous and nonsatiated and that a strictly preferred alternative is always chosen, and indifferent selection is then characterized by discontinuity in choice behavior. Two particular cases are then analyzed: monotonic preferences over a partially ordered set, and preferences representable by a continuous pseudo-utility function.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by HAL in its series Post-Print with number hal-00872255.

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Date of creation: 2008
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Publication status: Published, Mathematical Social Sciences, 2008, 55, 24-37
Handle: RePEc:hal:journl:hal-00872255

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Related research

Keywords: Revealed preference; Indifference; Continuity; Nonsatiation; Monotonicity; Pseudo-utility;

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  1. Mandler, Michael, 2005. "Incomplete preferences and rational intransitivity of choice," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 255-277, February.
  2. Mas-Colell, Andreu & Whinston, Michael D. & Green, Jerry R., 1995. "Microeconomic Theory," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195102680.
  3. Subiza, Begona & Peris, Josep E., 1998. "Nontrivial pseudo-utility functions," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 67-73, January.
  4. Cubitt, Robin P. & Sugden, Robert, 2001. "On Money Pumps," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 121-160, October.
  5. Sen, Amartya K, 1971. "Choice Functions and Revealed Preference," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 38(115), pages 307-17, July.
  6. Moulin,Hervi, 1991. "Axioms of Cooperative Decision Making," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521424585, November.
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Cited by:
  1. Itzhak Gilboa & Fabio Maccheroni & Massimo Marinacci & David Schmeidler, 2010. "Objective and Subjective Rationality in a Multiple Prior Model," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 78(2), pages 755-770, 03.
  2. Stefania Minardi & Andrei Savochkin, 2013. "Preferences With Grades of Indecisiveness," Carlo Alberto Notebooks 309, Collegio Carlo Alberto.
  3. Faro, José Heleno & Lefort, Jean Philippe, 2013. "Dynamic Objective and Subjective Rationality," Insper Working Papers wpe_312, Insper Working Paper, Insper Instituto de Ensino e Pesquisa.

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