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Expected Utility Theory without the Completeness Axiom

  • Juan Dubra
  • Fabio Maacheroni

    (Universita Bocconi)

  • Efe A. Ok

    (New York University)

We study axiomatically the problem of obtaining an expected utility representation for a potentially incomplete preference relation over lotteries by means of a set of von Neumann-Morgenstern utility functions. It is shown that, when the prize space is a compact metric space, a preference relation admits such a multi-utility representation provided that it satisfies the standard axioms of expected utility theory. Moreover, the representing set of utilities is unique in a well-defined sense.

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File URL: http://cowles.econ.yale.edu/P/cd/d12b/d1294.pdf
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Paper provided by Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University in its series Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers with number 1294.

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Length: 12 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2001
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cwl:cwldpp:1294
Contact details of provider: Postal: Yale University, Box 208281, New Haven, CT 06520-8281 USA
Phone: (203) 432-3702
Fax: (203) 432-6167
Web page: http://cowles.econ.yale.edu/

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Order Information: Postal: Cowles Foundation, Yale University, Box 208281, New Haven, CT 06520-8281 USA

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  1. Grandmont, Jean-Michel, 1972. "Continuity properties of a von Neumann-Morgenstern utility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 4(1), pages 45-57, February.
  2. Baucells, Manel & Shapley, Lloyd S., 2008. "Multiperson utility," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 62(2), pages 329-347, March.
  3. Mandler, Michael, 2005. "Incomplete preferences and rational intransitivity of choice," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 255-277, February.
  4. Karl Vind, 1996. "von Neumann Morgenstern Preferences," Discussion Papers 96-23, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  5. Juan Dubra & Efe A. Ok, 2002. "A Model of Procedural Decision Making in the Presence of Risk," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 43(4), pages 1053-1080, November.
  6. Fishburn, Peter C., 1975. "Separation theorems and expected utilities," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 16-34, August.
  7. Majumdar, Mukul & Sen, Amartya K, 1976. "A Note on Representing Partial Orderings," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 43(3), pages 543-45, October.
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