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.
- Core existence
- Minimal democracy
- Nash equilibrium
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science