Two criteria for social decisions

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12 Scopus citations


This paper studies the ethical underpinnings of two social criteria which are prominent in the literature dealing with the problem of evaluating allocations of several consumption goods in a population with heterogenous preferences. The Pazner-Schmeidler criterion [Pazner-Schmeidler, Egalitarian equivalent allocations: a new concept of economic equity, Quart. J. Econ. 92 (1978) 671-687] and the Egalitarian Walras criterion [Fleurbaey and Maniquet, Utilitarianism versus fairness in welfare economics, in: M. Salles, J.A. Weymark (Eds.), Justice, Political Liberalism and Utilitarianism: Themes from Harsanyi and Rawls, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1996, forthcoming] are prima facie quite different. But it is shown here that these criteria are related to close variants of the fairness condition that an allocation is better when every individual bundle in it dominates the average consumption in another allocation. In addition, the results suggest that the Pazner-Schmeidler criterion can be viewed as the best extension of the Walrasian criterion to non-convex economies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)421-447
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Economic Theory
Issue number1
StatePublished - May 2007
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Economics and Econometrics


  • Fairness
  • Social choice
  • Social welfare


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