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Consent (as described on English Wikipedia in November 2020[1]) is:

Consent occurs when one person voluntarily agrees to the proposal or desires of another.[2] It is a term of common speech, with specific definitions as used in such fields as the law, medicine, research, and sexual relationships. Consent as understood in specific contexts may differ from its everyday meaning. For example, a person with a mental disorder, a low mental age, or under the legal age of sexual consent may willingly engage in a sexual act that still fails to meet the legal threshold for consent as defined by applicable law.

United Nations agencies and initiatives in sex education programs believe that teaching the topic of consent as part of a comprehensive sexuality education is beneficial.[3] Types of consent include implied consent, express consent, informed consent and unanimous consent.

"Consent" should not be confused with consensus.

Concise Definition

A given voter consents to an alternative if she is willing to form a consensus around that alternative.

More Details

If a voter does not consent to an alternative, then she is not willing to form a consensus around an alternative. A voter can consent to more than one alternative. However, there are some rationality restrictions as to which alternatives an individual voter can consent to when she publicly expresses them in conjunction with preference orders.

Rationality Restrictions

Suppose there exists some given voter i who is confronted with the alternatives Ax, Ay, and Az. There are four rationality restrictions.

First, if voter i Ax>Ay and consents to Ay, then voter i must consent to Ax.

Second, if voter i Ax>Ay and does not consent to Ax, then voter i must not consent to Ay.

Third, if voter i Ax=Ay and consents to Ax, then voter i must consent to Ay.

Fourth, if voter i Ax=Ay and does not consent to Ax, then voter i must not consent to Ay.

These rules allow us to express voter consent in conjunction with a preference order. Such expressions are called preference-approvals, or total preference orders when it contains all alternatives. Total preference orders look exactly like complete preference orders, except they have a line that separates consented alternatives from non-consented alternatives.

See also

  1. English Wikipedia article "Consent", Revision 987850002 dated November 9, 2020:
  2. "Home : Oxford English Dictionary". Retrieved 2016-03-24.
  3. International technical guidance on sexuality education: An evidence-informed approach (PDF). Paris: UNESCO. 2018. p. 56. ISBN 978-92-3-100259-5.