Discipline: Political Science
Application of rational choice theory to the provision of welfare services and public goods and the relation between citizens' preferences and public policy.
There are difficulties in rationally translating people's choices into public policy, as indicated in the impossibility theorem.
Social choice is a theory not so much of the translation of individual into collective decisions as of the difficulty or impossibility of achieving such a connection.
Geoffrey Roberts and Alistair Edwards, A New Dictionary of Political Analysis (London, 1991)