# Copeland's method

Copeland's method is a Condorcet method in which the winner is determined by finding the candidate with the most pairwise victories.

Proponents argue that this method is more understandable to the general populace, which is generally familiar with the sporting equivalent. In many team sports, the teams with the greatest number of victories in regular season matchups make it to the playoffs.

This method often leads to ties when there is no Condorcet winner (i.e. when there are multiple members of the Smith set). For example, if there is a three-candidate majority rule cycle, each candidate will have exactly one loss, and there will be an unresolved tie between the three. Because of this indecisiveness.

Critics argue that it also puts too much emphasis on the quantity of pairwise victories rather than the magnitude of those victories (or conversely, of the defeats).

#### External references

1. E Stensholt, "Nonmonotonicity in AV (http://www.electoral-reform.org.uk/publications/votingmatters/P2.HTM)"; Electoral Reform Society Voting matters - Issue 15, June 2002 (online).
2. A.H. Copeland, A 'reasonable' social welfare function, Seminar on Mathematics in Social Sciences, University of Michigan, 1951.
3. V.R. Merlin, and D.G. Saari, "Copeland Method. II. Manipulation, Monotonicity, and Paradoxes"; Journal of Economic Theory; Vol. 72, No. 1; January, 1997; 148-172.
4. D.G. Saari. and V.R. Merlin, 'The Copeland Method. I. Relationships and the Dictionary'; Economic Theory; Vol. 8, No. l; June, 1996; 51-76.

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