The price of ‘one person, one vote’
Social Choice and Welfare, 2018, vol. 50, issue 2, 353-385
Abstract I study the design of binary voting rules in environments where agents are heterogenous either in the stakes that they have in the decision or in the quality of information they possess regarding the correct course of action. The price of ‘one person, one vote’ is defined as the reduction in welfare resulting from constraining the voting rule to treat the agents symmetrically. I analyze how this price depends on the parameters of the environment, particularly on the level of heterogeneity in the society. The results shed light on the tradeoff between equality and efficiency in the context of constitutional design.
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