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The Structure of Neutral Monotonic Social Functions

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In [6], Guha gave a complete characterization of path independent social decision functions which satisfy the independence of irrelevant alternatives condition, the strong Pareto principle, and UII, i.e., unanimous indifference implies social indifference. These conditions necessarily imply that a path independent social decision function is neutral and monotonic. In this paper, we extend Guha's characterization to the class of neutral monotonic social functions. We show that neutral monotonic social functions and their specializations to social decision functions, path independent social decision functions, and social welfare functions can be uniquely represented as a collection of overlapping simple games, each of which is defined on a nonempty set of concerned individuals. Moreover, each simple game satisfies intersection conditions depending on the number of social alternatives; the number of individuals belonging to the concerned set under consideration; and the collective rationality assumption. We also provide a characterization of neutral, monotonic and anonymous social decision functions, where the number of individuals in society exceeds the (finite) number of social alternatives, that generalizes both the representation theorem of May [10] and the representation theorems of Ferejohn and Grether [5].

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  • Julian H. Blau & Donald J. Brown, 1978. "The Structure of Neutral Monotonic Social Functions," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 485, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  • Handle: RePEc:cwl:cwldpp:485
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    1. Andreu Mas-Colell & Hugo Sonnenschein, 1972. "General Possibility Theorems for Group Decisions," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 39(2), pages 185-192.
    2. Kirman, Alan P. & Sondermann, Dieter, 1972. "Arrow's theorem, many agents, and invisible dictators," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 267-277, October.
    3. Ferejohn, John A. & Grether, David M., 1974. "On a class of rational social decision procedures," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 8(4), pages 471-482, August.
    4. Blau, Julian H & Deb, Rajat, 1977. "Social Decision Functions and the Veto," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(4), pages 871-879, May.
    5. J. Craven, 1971. "Majority Voting and Social Choice," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 38(2), pages 265-267.
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