The impartial observer theorem of social ethics
Following a long-standing philosophical tradition, impartiality is a distinctive and determining feature of moral judgments, especially in matters of distributive justice. This broad ethical tradition was revived in welfare economics by Vickrey, and above all, Harsanyi, under the form of the so-called Impartial Observer Theorem. The paper offers an analytical reconstruction of this argument, using a simple mathematical formalism, as well as a conceptual critique of each its premisses.
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Volume (Year): 17 (2001)
Issue (Month): 02 (October)
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References listed on IDEAS
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- Harsanyi, John C., 1994.
"Games with Incomplete Information,"
Nobel Prize in Economics documents
1994-1, Nobel Prize Committee.
- P. Mongin & C. d'Aspremont, 1996.
"Utility theory and ethics,"
THEMA Working Papers
96-32, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
- MONGIN, Philippe & d ASPREMONT, Claude, 1996. "Utility theory and ethics," CORE Discussion Papers 1996063, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- MONGIN, Philippe & d'ASPREMONT, Claude, . "Utility theory and ethics," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1423, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- Mongin, P & d'Aspremont, C, 1996. "Utility Theory and Ethics," Papers 9632, Paris X - Nanterre, U.F.R. de Sc. Ec. Gest. Maths Infor..
- John C. Harsanyi, 1955. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparisons of Utility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63, pages 309.
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