The Arrow Impossibility Theorem

Hardcover | July 22, 2014

byEric Maskin, Amartya SenAs told byKenneth J. Arrow

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Kenneth J. Arrow's pathbreaking "impossibility theorem" was a watershed innovation in the history of welfare economics, voting theory, and collective choice, demonstrating that there is no voting rule that satisfies the four desirable axioms of decisiveness, consensus, nondictatorship, and independence.

In this book Eric Maskin and Amartya Sen explore the implications of Arrow's theorem. Sen considers its ongoing utility, exploring the theorem's value and limitations in relation to recent research on social reasoning, and Maskin discusses how to design a voting rule that gets us closer to the ideal-given the impossibility of achieving the ideal. The volume also contains a contextual introduction by social choice scholar Prasanta K. Pattanaik and commentaries from Joseph E. Stiglitz and Kenneth J. Arrow himself, as well as essays by Maskin, Dasgupta, and Sen outlining the mathematical proof and framework behind their assertions.

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From the Publisher

Kenneth J. Arrow's pathbreaking "impossibility theorem" was a watershed innovation in the history of welfare economics, voting theory, and collective choice, demonstrating that there is no voting rule that satisfies the four desirable axioms of decisiveness, consensus, nondictatorship, and independence. In this book Eric Maskin and Am...

Eric Maskin is the Adams University Professor at Harvard University. He received the 2007 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics (with L. Hurwicz and R. Myerson) for laying the foundations of mechanism design theory. He has also contributed to game theory, contract theory, social choice theory, political economy, and other areas of economi...

other books by Eric Maskin

Social Choice and Individual Values: Third Edition
Social Choice and Individual Values: Third Edition

Kobo ebook|Jun 26 2012

$24.29 online$31.50list price(save 22%)
Format:HardcoverDimensions:168 pages, 8.25 × 5.5 × 0.98 inPublished:July 22, 2014Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231153287

ISBN - 13:9780231153287

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Read Amartya Sen's essay "Arrow and the Impossibility Theorem":

Table of Contents

AcknowledgmentsIntroduction, by Prasanta K. PattanaikPart 1: The Lectures Opening Remarks, by Joseph E. StiglitzArrow and the Impossibility Theorem, by Amartya SenThe Arrow Impossibility Theorem: Where Do We Go From Here?, by Eric MaskinCommentary, by Kenneth J. ArrowPart II: Supplemental Materials The Informational Basis of Social Choice, by Amartya SenOn The Robustness of Majority Rule, by Partha Dasgupta and Eric MaskinThe Origins of the Impossibility Theorem, by Kenneth J. ArrowNotes on Contributors

Editorial Reviews

The pioneers of social choice theory give us lively, enjoyable, and stimulating lectures and exchanges of ideas. Their views, more than sixty years after the publication of Kenneth J. Arrow's theorem, are of paramount interest to anyone aware of the difficulties of collective decisions.