A Graphical Analysis of Some Basic Results in Social Choice

31 Pages Posted: 28 Mar 2001 Last revised: 27 Sep 2010

See all articles by Estelle Cantillon

Estelle Cantillon

Free University of Brussels (VUB/ULB) - ECARES; Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

Antonio Rangel

California Institute of Technology

Date Written: March 2001

Abstract

We use a simple graphical approach to represent Social Welfare Functions that satisfy Independence of Irrelevant Alternatives and Anonymity. This approach allows us to provide simple and illustrative proofs of May's Theorem, of variants of classic impossibility results, and of a recent result on the robustness of Majority Rule due to Maskin (1995). In each case, geometry provides new insights on the working and interplay of the axioms, and suggests new results including a new characterization of the entire class of Majority Rule SWFs, a strengthening of May's Theorem, and a new version of Maskin's Theorem.

Suggested Citation

Cantillon, Estelle and Rangel, Antonio, A Graphical Analysis of Some Basic Results in Social Choice (March 2001). NBER Working Paper No. t0268, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=264370

Estelle Cantillon (Contact Author)

Free University of Brussels (VUB/ULB) - ECARES ( email )

Ave. Franklin D Roosevelt, 50 - C.P. 114
B-1050 Brussels
Belgium
+32 2 650 3840 (Phone)

Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR)

London
United Kingdom

Antonio Rangel

California Institute of Technology ( email )

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