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Utilitarianism or Welfarism: Does it Make a Difference?

  • Nicolas Gravel


    (GREQAM - Groupement de Recherche en Économie Quantitative d'Aix-Marseille - ECM - Ecole Centrale de Marseille - AMU - Aix Marseille Université - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - Université Paul Cézanne - Aix-Marseille 3 - Université de la Méditerranée - Aix-Marseille 2 - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

  • Patrick Moyes


    (GREThA - Groupe de Recherche en Economie Théorique et Appliquée - Université Montesquieu - Bordeaux 4 - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)

We show that it is possible to reconcile the utilitarian and welfarist principles under the requirement of unanimity provided that the set of profiles over which the consensus is attained is rich enough. More precisely, we identify a closedness condition which, if satisfied by a class of n-tuples of utility functions, guarantees that the rankings of social states induced by utilitarian and welfarist unanimities over that class are identical. We illustrate the importance of the result for the measurement of unidimensional as well as multidimensional inequalities from a dominance point of view.

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Date of creation: 20 Oct 2011
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Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:halshs-00634010
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