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Should Animal Welfare Count?

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  • Johansson-Stenman, Olof

    ()
    (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)

Abstract

This paper discusses the standard welfare economics assumption anthropocentric welfarism, i.e. that only human well-being counts intrinsically. New survey evidence from a representative sample in Sweden is presented, indicating that anthropocentrism is strongly rejected, on average. However, most people appear to have a consequentialistic ethics, in line with conventional welfare economics. The moral philosophical literature is also briefly reviewed, and here too anthropocentrism receives little support. Indirect evidence from environmental valuation studies seems also to imply that a non-negligible fraction of people has non-welfaristic and/or non-anthropocentric ethical preferences.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/2725
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 197.

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Length: 28 pages
Date of creation: 03 Mar 2006
Date of revision: 09 May 2006
Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0197

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, University of Gothenburg, Box 640, SE 405 30 GÖTEBORG, Sweden
Phone: 031-773 10 00
Web page: http://www.handels.gu.se/econ/
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Keywords: Animal welfare; anthropocentrism; welfarism; ethics; ethical preferences; costbenefit analysis;

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