Indifference and incompleteness distinguished by rational trade
We use an agent's strict preferences to define indifference and incompleteness relations that identify the sequences of trades that are rational to undertake. If an agent makes sequences of trades of options labeled indifferent, the agent will never be led to an inferior outcome, but trades of options where no preference judgments obtain can lead to diminished welfare. For one-shot choices, in contrast, there can be no behavioral distinction between indifference and incompleteness. Applications include: an isomorphism for incomplete preferences that indicates when weak and strict preferences contain interchangeable information, a characterization of the (possibly incomplete) preference relations consistent with a one-shot choice function, and an equivalent definition of incompleteness that relies on the philosophical theory of incommensurability.
References listed on IDEAS
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.:
- Mandler, Michael, 2005. "Incomplete preferences and rational intransitivity of choice," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 255-277, February.
- Bandyopadhyay, Taradas & Sengupta, Kunal, 1993. "Characterization of Generalized Weak Orders and Revealed Preference," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 3(3), pages 571-76, July.
- Eliaz, Kfir & Ok, Efe A., 2006. "Indifference or indecisiveness? Choice-theoretic foundations of incomplete preferences," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 61-86, July.
- Plott, Charles R, 1973. "Path Independence, Rationality, and Social Choice," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 41(6), pages 1075-91, November.
- Blair, Douglas H. & Bordes, Georges & Kelly, Jerry S. & Suzumura, Kotaro, 1976. "Impossibility theorems without collective rationality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 361-379, December.
- Masatlioglu, Yusufcan & Ok, Efe A., 2005. "Rational choice with status quo bias," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 121(1), pages 1-29, March.
- Michael Mandler, 2004. "Status quo maintenance reconsidered: changing or incomplete preferences?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(499), pages F518-F535, November.
- Truman F. Bewley, 1986. "Knightian Decision Theory: Part 1," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 807, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Ok, Efe A., 2002. "Utility Representation of an Incomplete Preference Relation," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 104(2), pages 429-449, June.
- Paola Manzini & Marco Mariotti, 2008. "On the Representation of Incomplete Preferences Over Risky Alternatives," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 65(4), pages 303-323, December.
- Schwartz, Thomas, 1976. "Choice functions, "rationality" conditions, and variations on the weak axiom of revealed preference," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 414-427, December.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:gamebe:v:67:y:2009:i:1:p:300-314. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.