Concept Nest is a Website which aims to share important ideas that arise in philosophy, ethics, rational choice theory, and economics.

These fields often use technical concepts that can be forbidding to learn and master. This website collects simple illustrations and introductory videos, to make these important topics more widely understood.

The author is Toby Handfield, an academic at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia.

Introduction to Social Choice Theory

Social choice theory uses mathematical methods to study different methods by which collectives can try to make decisions that reflect the preferences of the individuals that make up those collectives. It is a powerful way to study democratic ideals, because by using well defined mathematical ideas, it is possible to generalise over large numbers of different possible voting techniques.

These first two videos get things started by explaining

  • Some of the notation that is often used in explaining social choice ideas
  • The idea of a Condorcet poll
  • The distinction between a social welfare function and a collective choice rule

and a few other basics. More advanced videos to follow soon.

Understanding Arrow’s theorem

The Trolley Problem solved