1932

Abstract

We consider the relationships between the collective preference and non-cooperative game theory approaches to positive political theory. In particular, we show that an apparently decisive difference between the two approaches—that in sufficiently complex environments (e.g. high-dimensional choice spaces) direct preference aggregation models are incapable of generating any prediction at all, whereas non-cooperative game-theoretic models almost always generate prediction—is indeed only an apparent difference. More generally, we argue that when modeling collective decisions there is a fundamental tension between insuring existence of well-defined predictions, a criterion of minimal democracy, and general applicability to complex environments; while any two of the three are compatible under either approach, neither collective preference nor non-cooperative game theory can support models that simultaneously satisfy all three desiderata.

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/content/journals/10.1146/annurev.polisci.1.1.259
1998-06-01
2024-06-20
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  • Article Type: Review Article
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