We left out Economics when we introduced last year's Nobel laureates. Taking the time to read up what mechanism design theory could possibly be, it comes to our mind that there might be a link with yesterday's Individualism in Business post:
Apart from what we stated Chris Del also wrote that his thought is that, "in the absence of a strong sense of collective aspiration, individualism kills collective effort, which, in turn, spoils the result."
The Nobel prize answer is: "Whether one considers auctions, elections or the taxes we pay, our lives are governed by mechanisms which make collective decisions while attempting to take account of individual preferences. Such mechanisms are designed to deliver the greatest social good despite that fact that individual participants may act for their own gain, rather than for the general well-being of society."