Aggregation of coarse preferences

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We consider weak preference orderings over a set An of n alternatives. An individual preference is of refinement ℓ ≤ n if it first partitions An into ℓ subsets of 'tied' alternatives, and then ranks these subsets within a linear ordering. When ℓ < n, preferences are coarse. It is shown that, if the refinement of preferences does not exceed ℓ, a super majority rule (within non-abstaining voters) with rate 1 - 1/ℓ is necessary and sufficient to rule out Condorcet cycles of any length. It is argued moreover how the coarser the individual preferences, (1) the smaller the rate of super majority necessary to rule out cycles 'in probability'; (2) the more probable the pairwise comparisons of alternatives, for any given super majority rule.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)507-525
Number of pages19
JournalSocial Choice and Welfare
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Economics and Econometrics


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