Gödel, Kaplow, Shavell: Consistency and Completeness in Social Decisionmaking

24 Pages Posted: 19 Nov 2003


The recent debate on what criteria ought to guide social decisionmaking has focused on consistency: it has been argued that criteria contradicting one another - namely, welfare and fairness - should not be simultaneously employed in order for policy assessment to be consistent. In this article, I raise the related problem of completeness - that is, the question of whether or not a set of consistent criteria is capable of providing answers to all social decision problems. If not, as I suggest might be the case, then the only way to decide otherwise undecidable issues is to simultaneously employ both welfare and fairness, which implies a certain degree of inconsistency within the system.

Keywords: completeness, consistencey, efficiency, fairness,values

JEL Classification: A12, A13, K00

Suggested Citation

Dari-Mattiacci, Giuseppe, Gödel, Kaplow, Shavell: Consistency and Completeness in Social Decisionmaking. Chicago-Kent Law Review, Vol. 79, No. 2, pp. 497-520, 2004; George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 03-55. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=470122 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.470122

Giuseppe Dari-Mattiacci (Contact Author)

Columbia University - Law School ( email )

435 West 116th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.law.columbia.edu/faculty/giuseppe-dari-mattiacci

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