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Democracy, Rationality and Morality

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  • Dennis C. Mueller

Abstract

The fundamental, underlying assumption in economics, public choice, and increasingly in political science and other branches of the social sciences is that individuals are rational actors. Many people have questioned the realism of this assumption, however, and considerable experimental evidence seems to refute it. This paper builds on recent findings from the field of evolutionary psychology to discuss the evolution of rational behavior in humans. It then goes on to relate this evolutionary process to the evolution of political institutions and in particular of democratic institutions. Length 58 pages

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  • Dennis C. Mueller, 2006. "Democracy, Rationality and Morality," Papers on Economics and Evolution 2006-15, Philipps University Marburg, Department of Geography.
  • Handle: RePEc:esi:evopap:2006-15
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    1. Don Ross, 2006. "Evolutionary game theory and the normative theory of institutional design: Binmore and behavioral economics," Politics, Philosophy & Economics, , vol. 5(1), pages 51-79, February.
    2. Don Ross, 2007. "Economic Theory and Cognitive Science: Microexplanation," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262681684, January.
    3. Ken Binmore, 1998. "Game Theory and the Social Contract - Vol. 2: Just Playing," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 2, number 0262024446, January.
    4. Ken Binmore, 1994. "Game Theory and the Social Contract, Volume 1: Playing Fair," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262023636, January.
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