Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Intergenerational equity and the discount rate for cost-benefit analysis

Contents:

Author Info

  • Mertens, Jean-François

    (Université catholique de Louvain (UCL). Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE))

  • Rubinchik, Anna

    (---)

Abstract

For two independent principles of intergenerational equity, the implied discount rate equals the growth rate of real per-capita income, say 2%, thus falling right into the range suggested by the U.S. Offce of Management and Budget. To prove this, we develop a simple tool to evaluate small policy changes affecting several generations, by reducing the dynamic problem to a static one. A necessary condition is time-invariance, which is satisfied by any common solution concept in an overlapping generations model with exogenous growth. This tool is applied to derive the discount rate for cost-benefit analysis under two different utilitarian welfare functions: classical and relative. It is only with relative utilitarianism that the discount rate is well-defined for a heterogeneous society, is corroborated by an independent principle equating values of hugrowth rate of real per-capita income.

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://www.uclouvain.be/cps/ucl/doc/core/documents/coredp2008_77.pdf
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) in its series CORE Discussion Papers with number 2008077.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: 01 Dec 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:cor:louvco:2008077

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Voie du Roman Pays 34, 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve (Belgium)
Phone: 32(10)474321
Fax: +32 10474304
Email:
Web page: http://www.uclouvain.be/core
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: social welfare function; social welfare functional; overlapping generations; exogenous growth; policy reform; intergenerational equity; intergenerational fairness; cost-benefit analysis; discount rate; social discount rate; utilitarianism; relative utilitarianism; welfarism.;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. FLEURBAEY, Marc & MICHEL, Philippe, 1997. "Intertemporal equity and the extension of the Ramsey criterion," CORE Discussion Papers 1997004, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  2. Tjalling C. Koopmans, 1959. "Stationary Ordinal Utility and Impatience," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 81, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  3. d’ASPREMONT, Claude, . "Formal welfarism and intergenerational equity," CORE Discussion Papers RP -2047, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  4. Timothy J. Kehoe & David K. Levine, 1984. "Regularity in Overlapping Generations Exchange Economies," Levine's Working Paper Archive 2184, David K. Levine.
  5. Mishan, E J, 1971. "Evaluation of Life and Limb: A Theoretical Approach," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 79(4), pages 687-705, July-Aug..
  6. Laurence J. Kotlikoff, 1998. "The A-K Model: It's Past, Present, and Future," NBER Working Papers 6684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Theodore C. Bergstrom, 2004. "Benefit-Cost in a Benevolent Society," Public Economics 0405006, EconWPA.
  8. Alma Cohen & Liran Einav, 2005. "Estimating Risk Preferences from Deductible Choice," Discussion Papers 04-031, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  9. Asheim, Geir B., 1991. "Unjust intergenerational allocations," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 54(2), pages 350-371, August.
  10. Geanakoplos, J. & Polemarchakis, H., 1991. "Overlapping generations," CORE Discussion Papers 1991031, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  11. Graciela Chichilnisky, 1996. "An axiomatic approach to sustainable development," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 231-257, April.
  12. Anna Rubinchik & Jean-Francois Mertens, 2008. "Intergenerational equity and the discount rate for cost-benefit analysis," 2008 Meeting Papers 874, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  13. Asheim, Geir B. & Mitra, Tapan & Tungodden, Bertil, 2006. "Sustainable recursive social welfare functions," Memorandum 18/2006, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  14. King, Robert G & Plosser, Charles I & Rebelo, Sergio T, 2002. "Production, Growth and Business Cycles: Technical Appendix," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 20(1-2), pages 87-116, October.
  15. Sen, Amartya, 2000. "Social justice and the distribution of income," Handbook of Income Distribution, in: A.B. Atkinson & F. Bourguignon (ed.), Handbook of Income Distribution, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 1, pages 59-85 Elsevier.
  16. Robert R. Bliss & Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou, 2004. "Option-Implied Risk Aversion Estimates," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 59(1), pages 407-446, 02.
  17. Geanakoplos, John D. & Polemarchakis, Heraklis M., 1991. "Overlapping generations," Handbook of Mathematical Economics, in: W. Hildenbrand & H. Sonnenschein (ed.), Handbook of Mathematical Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 35, pages 1899-1960 Elsevier.
  18. DHILLON, Amrita & MERTENS, Jean-François, 1993. "Relative Utilitarianism," CORE Discussion Papers 1993048, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
  19. Bell, Clive & Devarajan, Shantayanan, 1983. "Shadow Prices for Project Evaluation under Alternative Macroeconomic Specifications," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 98(3), pages 457-77, August.
  20. Juan Crespo & Carmelo Nuñez & Juan Rincón-Zapatero, 2009. "On the impossibility of representing infinite utility streams," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 40(1), pages 47-56, July.
  21. Stephen Coate, 1999. "An Efficiency Approach to the Evaluation of Policy Changes," NBER Working Papers 7316, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  22. Dreze, Jean & Stern, Nicholas, 1987. "The theory of cost-benefit analysis," Handbook of Public Economics, in: A. J. Auerbach & M. Feldstein (ed.), Handbook of Public Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 14, pages 909-989 Elsevier.
  23. Paul A. Samuelson, 1958. "An Exact Consumption-Loan Model of Interest with or without the Social Contrivance of Money," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 66, pages 467.
  24. Andres Erosa & Martin Gervais, 2001. "Optimal taxation in infinitely-lived agent and overlapping generations models : a review," Economic Quarterly, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, issue Spr, pages 23-44.
  25. repec:fth:louvco:9131 is not listed on IDEAS
  26. de la Croix,David & Michel,Philippe, 2002. "A Theory of Economic Growth," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521001151, April.
  27. Gale, David, 1973. "Pure exchange equilibrium of dynamic economic models," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 6(1), pages 12-36, February.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

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

Cited by:
  1. Anna Rubinchik & Jean-Francois Mertens, 2008. "Intergenerational equity and the discount rate for cost-benefit analysis," 2008 Meeting Papers 874, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  2. Jean-Francois Mertens, 2010. "Welfare evaluation of policies in an overlapping generations growth model," 2010 Meeting Papers 1239, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. MERTENS, Jean-François & RUBINCHIK, Anna, . "Intergenerational equity and the discount rate for policy analysis," CORE Discussion Papers RP -2438, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).

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:cor:louvco:2008077. 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: (Alain GILLIS).

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.