Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Public policy toward life saving: Should consumer preferences rule?

Contents:

Author Info

  • Richard Thaler
  • William Gould

Abstract

Needless to say, people who face risks that entail a high probability of death are willing to pay extraordinarily large sums to reduce the probability. Those that face low risks are typically unwilling to pay anything at all to reduce those risks. Accordingly, a public policy that would allocate funds to maximize the number of lives saved conflicts sharply with the willingness-to-pay criterion. Information about their survival probabilities always increases willingness of individuals to pay for life saving. Risk-aversè individuals may reject insurance for the treatment of fatal diseases that is fairly priced, even if they plan to pay for the treatment if they get sick; this result has implications regarding the choice of treatment or prevention. If the objective of public policy is to save the largest number of lives, then the allocation of funds must be made before individuals are affected by life-threatening risks.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.2307/3324705
File Function: Link to full text; subscription required
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

Volume (Year): 1 (1982)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 223-242

as in new window
Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:1:y:1982:i:2:p:223-242

Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/34787/home

Related research

Keywords:

References

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Dale Whittington & Duncan Macrae, 1990. "Comment: Judgments about who has standing in cost-benefit analysis," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 9(4), pages 536-547.
  2. Hosseini, Hamid, 2003. "The arrival of behavioral economics: from Michigan, or the Carnegie School in the 1950s and the early 1960s?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 391-409, September.
  3. Richard O. Zerbe, 1991. "Comment: Does benefit cost analysis stand alone? rights and standing," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 10(1), pages 96-105.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:1:y:1982:i:2:p:223-242. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Wiley-Blackwell Digital Licensing) or (Christopher F. Baum).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.