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Harsanyi’s Social Aggregation Theorem : A Multi-Profile Approach with Variable-Population Extensions

  • BLACKORBY, Charles
  • BOSSERT, Walter
  • DONALDSON, David

This paper provides new versions of Harsanyi’s social aggregation theorem that are formulated in terms of prospects rather than lotteries. Strengthening an earlier result, fixed-population ex-ante utilitarianism is characterized in a multi-profile setting with fixed probabilities. In addition, we extend the social aggregation theorem to social-evaluation problems under uncertainty with a variable population and generalize our approach to uncertain alternatives, which consist of compound vectors of probability distributions and prospects.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/1866/492
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Paper provided by Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 2003-05.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: 2003
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mtl:montde:2003-05
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  1. Blackorby, C. & Bossert, W. & Donaldson, D., 1996. "Information Invariance in Variable-Population Social-Choice Problems," Working Papers 9616, University of Waterloo, Department of Economics.
  2. Mongin, P., . "Harsanyi's aggregation theorem: multi-profile version and unsettled questions," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1153, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  3. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David & Weymark, John A., 1999. "Harsanyi's social aggregation theorem for state-contingent alternatives1," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 365-387, November.
  4. Broome, John, 2006. "Weighing Lives," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199297702, March.
  5. De Meyer, B. & Mongin, P., . "A note on affine aggregation," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1136, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  6. Mongin, P., . "Consistent Bayesian aggregation," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1176, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  7. MONGIN, Philippe & d'ASPREMONT, Claude, . "Utility theory and ethics," CORE Discussion Papers RP -1423, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  8. Blackorby, Charles & Bossert, Walter & Donaldson, David, 2002. "Utilitarianism and the theory of justice," Handbook of Social Choice and Welfare, in: K. J. Arrow & A. K. Sen & K. Suzumura (ed.), Handbook of Social Choice and Welfare, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 11, pages 543-596 Elsevier.
  9. Mongin, Philippe, 1998. "The paradox of the Bayesian experts and state-dependent utility theory," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 331-361, April.
  10. Blackorby, Charles & Bossert, Walter & Donaldson, David, 2000. "Population Principles with Number-Dependent Critical Levels," Working Papers 2000-06, Rice University, Department of Economics.
  11. Blackorby, Charles & Bossert, Walter & Donaldson, David, 1995. "Intertemporal Population Ethics: Critical-Level Utilitarian Principles," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(6), pages 1303-20, November.
  12. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David & Weymark, John A, 1984. "Social Choice with Interpersonal Utility Comparisons: A Diagrammatic Introduction," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(2), pages 327-56, June.
  13. John C. Harsanyi, 1955. "Cardinal Welfare, Individualistic Ethics, and Interpersonal Comparisons of Utility," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 63, pages 309.
  14. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521311830 is not listed on IDEAS
  15. Hammond, Peter J, 1981. "Ex-ante and Ex-post Welfare Optimality under Uncertainty," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 48(191), pages 235-50, August.
  16. Roberts, Kevin W S, 1980. "Interpersonal Comparability and Social Choice Theory," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(2), pages 421-39, January.
  17. Broome, John, 1990. "Bolker-Jeffrey Expected Utility Theory and Axiomatic Utilitarianism," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 57(3), pages 477-502, July.
  18. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David, 1984. "Social criteria for evaluating population change," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 25(1-2), pages 13-33, November.
  19. Walter Bossert & David Donaldson & Charles Blackorby, 1998. "Uncertainty and critical-level population principles," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 1-20.
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