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Justifying Sustainability

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Author Info

  • Asheim, G.B.
  • Buchholz, W.
  • Tungodden, B.

Abstract

In the framework of ethical social choice theory, sustainability is justified by Efficiency and Equity as ethical axioms. These axioms correspond to the Suppes-Sen Grading principle. In technologies that are productive in a certain sense, the set of Suppes-Sen maximal utility paths is shown to equal the set of non-decreasing and efficient paths. Since any such path is sustainable, Efficiency and Equity can thus be used to deem any unsustainable path as ethically unacceptable. This finding is contrasted with results that seem to indicate that an infinite number of generations cannot be treated equally.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration- in its series Papers with number 5/99.

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Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:fth:norgee:5/99

Contact details of provider:
Postal: NORWEGIAN SCHOOL OF ECONOMICS AND BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, HELLEVEIEN 30, 5035 BERGEN SANDVIKEN NORWAY.
Phone: 5595 9000
Fax: 5595 9100
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Web page: http://www.nhh.no/
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Keywords: SOCIAL WELFARE ; ENVIRONMENT ; EFFICIENCY;

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References

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  1. Graciela Chichilnisky, 1996. "An axiomatic approach to sustainable development," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 231-257, April.
  2. P. Mongin & C. d'Aspremont, 1996. "Utility theory and ethics," THEMA Working Papers 96-32, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
  3. repec:fth:louvco:9663 is not listed on IDEAS
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  5. Graciela Chichilnisky, 1997. "What Is Sustainable Development?," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 73(4), pages 467-491.
  6. Blackorby, Charles & Donaldson, David & Weymark, John A, 1984. "Social Choice with Interpersonal Utility Comparisons: A Diagrammatic Introduction," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 25(2), pages 327-56, June.
  7. Marc Fleurbaey & Philippe Michel, 1999. "Quelques réflexions sur la croissance optimale," Revue Économique, Programme National Persée, vol. 50(4), pages 715-732.
  8. Marc FLEURBAEY & Philippe MICHEL, 1994. "Optimal Growth and Transfers between Generations," Discussion Papers (REL - Recherches Economiques de Louvain) 1994031, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
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  20. John C. V. Pezzey, 1997. "Sustainability Constraints versus "Optimality" versus Intertemporal Concern, and Axioms versus Data," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 73(4), pages 448-466.
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  23. Asheim, G.B., 1989. "Unjust Intergenerational Allocations," Papers 09-89, Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration-.
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