Some Considerations Regarding the Problem of Multidimensional Utility
The concept of 'utility' is often used in ambiguous ways in economics, from having substantive psychological connotations to being a formal placeholder representing a person's preferences. In the accounts of the early utilitarians, it was a multidimensional measure that has been condensed during the marginalist revolution into the unidimensional measure we know today. But can we compare different pleasures? This paper assesses the evidence from psychology and neurosciences on how to best conceive of utility. It turns out that empirical evidence does not favor a view of multidimensional utility. This does not eliminate the possibility to make a normative argument supporting a multidimensional notion of utility.
|Date of creation:||08 Dec 2009|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Carl-Zeiss-Strasse 3, 07743 JENA|
Phone: +049 3641/ 9 43000
Fax: +049 3641/ 9 43000
Web page: http://www.jenecon.de
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Dr. Peter Kenning & Hilke Plassmann, 2004. "NeuroEconomics," Experimental 0412005, EconWPA.
- Sen, Amartya K, 1973. "Behaviour and the Concept of Preference," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 40(159), pages 241-59, August.
- Christian List, 2004. "Multidimensional Welfare Aggregation," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 119(1_2), pages 119-142, 04.
- Spash, Clive L. & Hanley, Nick, 1995.
"Preferences, information and biodiversity preservation,"
Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 191-208, March.
- Nick Hanley & Clive L Spash, 1993. "Preferences, Information and Biodiversity Preservation," Working Papers Series 93/12, University of Stirling, Division of Economics.
- Spash, Clive L. & Hanley, N, 1994. "Preferences, information and biodiversity preservation," MPRA Paper 38351, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- George J. Stigler, 1950.
"The Development of Utility Theory. II,"
Journal of Political Economy,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 58, pages 373.
- Landreth, Anthony & Bickle, John, 2008. "Neuroeconomics, Neurophysiology And The Common Currency Hypothesis," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 24(03), pages 419-429, November.
- Luigino Bruni & Robert Sugden, 2007. "The road not taken: how psychology was removed from economics, and how it might be brought back," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(516), pages 146-173, 01.
- Broome, John, 1991. "A Reply to Sen," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 7(02), pages 285-287, October.
- Knutson, Brian & Peterson, Richard, 2005. "Neurally reconstructing expected utility," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 305-315, August.
- Knetsch, Jack L., 1992. "Preferences and nonreversibility of indifference curves," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 131-139, January.
- McCabe, Kevin A., 2008. "Neuroeconomics And The Economic Sciences," Economics and Philosophy, Cambridge University Press, vol. 24(03), pages 345-368, November.
- Blackorby, Charles & Bossert, Walter & Donaldson, David, 2004.
"Multi-Profile Welfarism : A Generalisation,"
The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS)
710, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
- Charles Blackorby & Walter Bossert & David Donaldson, 2005. "Multi-profile welfarism: A generalization," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 24(2), pages 253-267, 04.
- Charles Blackorby & Walter Bossert & David Donaldson, 2005. "Multi_profile welfarism: a generalization," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 25(1), pages 227-228, October.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2009-099. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Markus Pasche)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.