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The Unsolvable Dilemma of a Paretian Policymaker

12 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2004  

Giuseppe Dari‐Mattiacci

Amsterdam Law School; Amsterdam Business School; Tinbergen Institute

Nuno M. Garoupa

Texas A&M University School of Law; Catholic University of Portugal (UCP) - Católica Global School of Law

Abstract

In this paper, we argue that social decisionmaking is subject to a fundamental conflict between consistency and completeness. We show that a consistent welfarist method of policy assessment, that is, one that never violates the Pareto principle, may be incomplete in the sense of being incapable of providing a solution to important social welfare problems.

Keywords: Individualistic social welfare, Interdependent preferences

JEL Classification: C0, D63, K0

Suggested Citation

Dari‐Mattiacci, Giuseppe and Garoupa, Nuno M., The Unsolvable Dilemma of a Paretian Policymaker. Supreme Court Economic Review, Forthcoming; George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 04-52. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=621862 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.621862

Amsterdam Business School ( email )

Roetersstraat 18
Amsterdam, 1018WB
Netherlands

Tinbergen Institute

Gustav Mahlerplein 117
Amsterdam, 1082 MS
Netherlands

Nuno M. Garoupa

Texas A&M University School of Law ( email )

1515 Commerce St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102
United States

Catholic University of Portugal (UCP) - Católica Global School of Law ( email )

Lisboa
Portugal

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