29 January 2010, Computational Social Choice Seminar, Robert van Rooij
Ordering relations play an important role in economics, but also in natural language semantics, in particular to account for comparative statements. Arrow (1959) derived preference orders from choice behavior. In this talk I show how something similar might be done to derive the meaning of, e.g. `taller than', from the meaning of `tall'. Second, I show how recent formal analyses of interpersonal utilities in economics and social philosophy immediately seem relevant for the analysis of comparative sentences which involve either more than one adjective (e.g. `John is taller than he is smart'), or more than one dimension.