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Published April 1983 | public
Journal Article

Social welfare functions for economic environments with and without the pareto principle


It is shown for the case of private goods economies that every social welfare function satisfying a weak nonimposition condition and the independence of irrelevant alternatives axiom is of one of the following forms. It is either null, or the class of decisive coalitions is an ultrafilter, or the class of anti-decisive coalitions is an ultrafilter. In the case of a private goods economy with finitely many traders, the latter conditions imply the existence of either a dictator or anti-dictator. By requiring the Pareto principle as well, it is easily seen that the social welfare function must be dictatorial.

Additional Information

Copyright 1983 by Academic Press, Inc. Received March 24, 1980; revised September 24, 1981. I would like to thank an anonymous referee for his careful reading and useful comments.

Additional details

August 19, 2023
October 17, 2023