Reconsidering Environmental Policy: Prescriptive Consequentialism and Volitional Pragmatism
Prescriptive consequentialism informs currentassessments of rational action in economics. Choice is alleged to start with stable andknown preferences over alternative outcomes,and rational agents choose actions thatmaximize well being with respect to thesepreferences. Evidence suggests that thisformulation fails as an accurate and reliabledescription of how individuals make choices,and this formulation seems particularly at oddswith collective decision making with respect toenvironmental policy. Pragmatism, an importantbranch of philosophy, offers a theory of humanaction that economists would find helpful. This promise is especially pertinent to effortsdevoted to the assignment of values to parts ofnature, and to environmental policy in general. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004
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Volume (Year): 28 (2004)
Issue (Month): 1 (May)
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