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Group deliberation and the transformation ofjudgments: an impossibility result

  • Christian List

While a large social-choice-theoretic literature discusses the aggregation ofindividual judgments into collective ones, there is relatively little formalwork on the transformation of individual judgments in group deliberation. Idevelop a model of judgment transformation and prove a baselineimpossibility result: Any judgment transformation function satisfying someinitially plausible condition is the identity function, under which no opinionchange occurs. I identify escape routes from this impossibility result andargue that successful group deliberation must be 'holistic': individualscannot generally revise their judgments on a proposition based on judgmentson that proposition alone but must take other propositions into account too. Idiscuss the significance of these findings for democratic theory.

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File URL: http://sticerd.lse.ac.uk/dps/pepp/pepp26.pdf
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Paper provided by Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, LSE in its series STICERD - Political Economy and Public Policy Paper Series with number 26.

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Date of creation: Mar 2007
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Handle: RePEc:cep:stipep:26
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://sticerd.lse.ac.uk/_new/publications/default.asp

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  1. G Rdenfors, Peter, 2006. "A Representation Theorem For Voting With Logical Consequences," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 22(02), pages 181-190, July.
  2. List, Christian, 2003. "A possibility theorem on aggregation over multiple interconnected propositions," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 1-13, February.
  3. Dietrich, Franz, 2006. "Judgment aggregation: (im)possibility theorems," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 126(1), pages 286-298, January.
  4. Franz Dietrich & Christian List, 2005. "Arrow's Theorem in Judgement Aggregation," Public Economics 0504007, EconWPA, revised 10 Sep 2005.
  5. Christian List, 2002. "A Model of Path-Dependence in Decisions over Multiple Propositions," Economics Papers 2002-W15, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
  6. Franz Dietrich, 2007. "A generalised model of judgment aggregation," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 28(4), pages 529-565, June.
  7. Nehring, Klaus, 2003. "Arrow's theorem as a corollary," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 379-382, September.
  8. Wilson, Robert, 1975. "On the theory of aggregation," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 89-99, February.
  9. Rubinstein, Ariel & Fishburn, Peter C., 1986. "Algebraic aggregation theory," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 38(1), pages 63-77, February.
  10. List, Christian & Pettit, Philip, 2002. "Aggregating Sets of Judgments: An Impossibility Result," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(01), pages 89-110, April.
  11. Klaus Nehring, 2005. "The (Im)Possibility of a Paretian Rational," Economics Working Papers 0068, Institute for Advanced Study, School of Social Science.
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