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Altruism, fertility, and the value of children: Health policy evaluation and intergenerational welfare

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  • Birchenall, Javier A.
  • Soares, Rodrigo R.

Abstract

This paper accounts for the value of children and future generations in the evaluation of health policies. This is achieved through the incorporation of altruism and fertility in a "value of life" type of framework. We are able to express adults' willingness to pay for changes in child mortality and also to incorporate the welfare of future generations in the evaluation of current policies. Our model clarifies a series of puzzles from the literature on the "value of life" and on intergenerational welfare comparisons. We show that, by incorporating altruism and fertility into the analysis of the recent U.S. experience, the estimated welfare gain of a young adult from reductions in mortality easily doubles.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Public Economics.

Volume (Year): 93 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1-2 (February)
Pages: 280-295

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Handle: RePEc:eee:pubeco:v:93:y:2009:i:1-2:p:280-295

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505578

Related research

Keywords: Value of life Mortality Fertility Altruism Intergenerational welfare Willingness to pay;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Cordoba, Juan Carlos, 2012. "Children and the Wealth of Nations," Staff General Research Papers 34989, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
  2. Marla Ripoll & Juan Carlos Cordoba, 2011. "A Contribution to the Economic Theory of Fertility," 2011 Meeting Papers 1207, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. Daniel R.C. Cerqueira & Rodrigo R. Soares, 2012. "The Welfare Cost of Homicides in Brazil: Accounting for Heterogeneity in the Willingness to Pay for Mortality Reductions," Textos para discussão 600, Department of Economics PUC-Rio (Brazil).
  4. Kuhn, Michael & Wrzaczek, Stefan & Prskawetz, Alexia & Feichtinger, Gustav, 2011. "Optimal Choice of Health and Retirement in a Life-Cycle Model," Annual Conference 2011 (Frankfurt, Main): The Order of the World Economy - Lessons from the Crisis 48681, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
  5. Córdoba, Juan Carlos & Ripoll, Marla, 2013. "What explains schooling differences across countries?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 184-202.
  6. Kuhn, Michael & Wrzaczek, Stefan & Prskawetz, Alexia & Feichtinger, Gustav, 2011. "Externalities in a life cycle model with endogenous survival," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(4-5), pages 627-641.

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