Review of Economic Design

, Volume 18, Issue 4, pp 265–287 | Cite as

Common preference, non-consequential features, and collective decision making

  • Susumu CatoEmail author
Original Paper


This paper examines an extended framework of Arrovian social choice theory. We consider two classes of values: consequential values and non-consequential values. Each individual has a comprehensive preference based on the two. Non-consequential values are assumed to be homogeneous among individuals. It is shown that a social ordering function satisfying Arrovian conditions must be non-consequential: a social comprehensive preference gives unequivocal priority to non-consequential values. We clarify the role of common preferences over non-consequential features.


Non-consequentialism Arrow’s impossibility theorem   Collective decision making Welfarism 

JEL Classification

D63 D71 



An earlier version of this paper was circulated under the title “The role of common morality in social choice.” I am grateful to Katsuhito Iwai, Kazuya Kamiya, Tomohiko Kawamori, Masahiro Okuno-Fujiwara, Masayuki Otaki, Toyotaka Sakai, Dan Sasaki, Kotaro Suzumura, Naoki Yoshihara, two anonymous referees, an associate editor, and Atila Abdulkadiroglu of this journal for helpful comments and suggestions. This paper was financially supported by Grant-in-Aid for Young Scientists (Start-up; B) from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Social ScienceThe University of TokyoTokyoJapan

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