A Note on the Principle of "Normative Individualism"
AbstractAccording to the principle of Normative Individualism, the evaluation of economic states and processes should be guided exclusively by the wishes of the individuals who are seen as the only bearer of values. Despite its intuitive appeal and its almost universal acceptance in normative economics (i.e., Welfare Economics as well as Constitutional Economics), the principle itself has received only scarce, mostly skeptical attention in the literature. It has even less been discussed from an explicitly evolutionary perspective on human preference formation processes. It is argued that it may be made compatible with such a perspective if it is transformed into a concept of "developmental individualism" that encompasses three sets of criteria, viz. preference-based, opportunity-based and distributive justice criteria.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Max Planck Institute of Economics, Evolutionary Economics Group in its series Papers on Economics and Evolution with number 2005-17.
Length: 25 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2006
Date of revision:
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- B4 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Economic Methodology
- B52 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Current Heterodox Approaches - - - Institutional; Evolutionary
- D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
- I3 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty
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