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Welfarist-consequentialism, similarity of attitudes, and Arrow’s general impossibility theorem

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  • Kotaro Suzumura

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  • Yongsheng Xu

    ()

Abstract

Two features of Arrow’s social choice theory are critically scrutinized. The first feature is the welfarist-consequentialism, which not only bases social judgements about right or wrong actions on the assessment of their consequences, but also assesses consequences in terms of people’s welfare and nothing else. The second feature is a similarity of people’s attitudes towards social outcomes as a possible resolvent of the Arrow impossibility theorem. Two extended frameworks, one consequentialist and the other non-consequentialist, are developed. Both frameworks are shown to admit some interesting resolutions of Arrow’s general impossibility theorem, which are rather sharply contrasting with Arrow’s own perspective. Copyright Springer-Verlag 2004

Suggested Citation

  • Kotaro Suzumura & Yongsheng Xu, 2004. "Welfarist-consequentialism, similarity of attitudes, and Arrow’s general impossibility theorem," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 22(1), pages 237-251, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:sochwe:v:22:y:2004:i:1:p:237-251 DOI: 10.1007/s00355-003-0284-0
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Hans Gersbach & Verena Liessem, 2008. "Reelection threshold contracts in politics," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 31(2), pages 233-255, August.
    2. John Ferejohn, 1986. "Incumbent performance and electoral control," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 50(1), pages 5-25, January.
    3. Gersbach, Hans & Schneider, Maik T., 2012. "Tax contracts and elections," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 56(7), pages 1461-1479.
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    Cited by:

    1. Yukinori Iwata, 2009. "Consequences, opportunities, and Arrovian impossibility theorems with consequentialist domains," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 32(3), pages 513-531, March.
    2. Susumu Cato, 2014. "Common preference, non-consequential features, and collective decision making," Review of Economic Design, Springer;Society for Economic Design, vol. 18(4), pages 265-287, December.
    3. Walter Bossert & Marc Fleurbaey, 2015. "An Interview with Kotaro Suzumura," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 44(1), pages 179-208, January.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • 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

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