On the justice of voting systems
AbstractWhat are the best voting systems in terms of utilitarianism? Or in terms of maximin, or maximax? We study these questions for the case of three alternatives and a class of structurally equivalent voting rules. We show that plurality, arguably the most widely used voting system, performs very poorly in terms of remarkable ideals of justice, such as utilitarianism or maximin, and yet is optimal in terms of maximax. Utilitarianism is best approached by a voting system converging to the Borda count, while the best way to achieve maximin is by means of a voting system converging to negative voting. We study the robustness of our results across different social cultures, measures of performance, and population sizes.
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 Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra in its series Economics Working Papers with number 987.
Date of creation: Nov 2006
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.econ.upf.edu/
Voting; Scoring Rules; Utilitarianism; Maximin; Maximax; Impartial Culture Condition;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D00 - Microeconomics - - General - - - General
- D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
- D71 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Social Choice; Clubs; Committees; Associations
- D72 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Political Processes: Rent-seeking, Lobbying, Elections, Legislatures, and Voting Behavior
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-03-10 (All new papers)
- NEP-CDM-2007-03-10 (Collective Decision-Making)
- NEP-POL-2007-03-10 (Positive Political Economics)
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.:
- Tilman Börgers & Peter Postl, 2005.
784828000000000188, UCLA Department of Economics.
- Roger B. Myerson, 2000.
"Comparison of Scoring Rules in Poisson Voting Games,"
Econometric Society World Congress 2000 Contributed Papers
0686, Econometric Society.
- Myerson, Roger B., 2002. "Comparison of Scoring Rules in Poisson Voting Games," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 219-251, March.
- Roger B. Myerson, 1998. "Comparison of Scoring Rules in Poisson Voting Games," Discussion Papers 1214, Northwestern University, Center for Mathematical Studies in Economics and Management Science.
- DeMeyer, Frank & Plott, Charles R, 1970. "The Probability of a Cyclical Majority," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 38(2), pages 345-54, March.
- Aghion, Philippe & Bolton, Patrick, 2003.
"Incomplete Social Contracts,"
4554123, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Nicola Persico & Alessandro Lizzeri, 2001.
"The Provision of Public Goods under Alternative Electoral Incentives,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 225-239, March.
- Alessandro Lizzeri & Nicola Persico, . ""The Provision of Public Goods Under Alternative Electoral Incentives''," CARESS Working Papres 98-08, University of Pennsylvania Center for Analytic Research and Economics in the Social Sciences.
- Alessro Lizzeri & Nicola Persico, . "The Provision of Public Goods Under Alternative Electoral Incentives," Penn CARESS Working Papers b96440ba0bfa06ca550ac40aa, Penn Economics Department.
- Giovanni Maggi & Massimo Morelli, 2006.
"Self-Enforcing Voting in International Organizations,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 96(4), pages 1137-1158, September.
- Giovanni Maggi & Massimo Morelli, 2003. "Self Enforcing Voting in International Organizations," NBER Working Papers 10102, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Salvador Barbera & Matthew O. Jackson, 2004.
"Choosing How to Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules and Constitutions,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
MIT Press, vol. 119(3), pages 1011-1048, August.
- Salvador BARBER?Author-Email: email@example.com & Matthew O. JACKSON, 2003. "Choosing How to Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules and Constitutions," UFAE and IAE Working Papers 596.03, Unitat de Fonaments de l'Anàlisi Econòmica (UAB) and Institut d'Anàlisi Econòmica (CSIC).
- Salvador Barberà & Matthew O. Jackson, 2000. "Choosing How to Choose: Self-Stable Majority Rules and Constitutions," Working Papers 57, Barcelona Graduate School of Economics.
- B�rd Harstad, 2005. "Majority Rules and Incentives," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(4), pages 1535-1568, November.
- Caplin, Andrew S & Nalebuff, Barry J, 1988. "On 64%-Majority Rule," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 56(4), pages 787-814, July.
- Jonathan Levin & Barry Nalebuff, 1995. "An Introduction to Vote-Counting Schemes," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 9(1), pages 3-26, Winter.
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.