IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Equity between overlapping generations


  • Quiggin, John


This note is a demonstration that, in the presence of overlapping generations and under standard conditions for a social welfare ordering (Pareto optimality, transitivity, independence), the only ordering consistent with utilitarianism for all people currently alive at any given point in time is one based on weighting all people equally, regardless of their date of birth. In particular, this implies that, under reasonable conditions, the appropriate choice for the pure rate of social time preference is equal to zero.

Suggested Citation

  • Quiggin, John, 2008. "Equity between overlapping generations," Risk and Sustainable Management Group Working Papers 152091, University of Queensland, School of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:uqsers:152091

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Mehra, Rajnish & Prescott, Edward C., 1985. "The equity premium: A puzzle," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 145-161, March.
    2. William D. Nordhaus, 2007. "A Review of the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(3), pages 686-702, September.
    3. Schelling, Thomas C, 1995. "Intergenerational discounting," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 23(4-5), pages 395-401.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


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

    Cited by:

    1. repec:lsg:lsgwps:wp84 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Stern, Nicholas, 2014. "Ethics, equity and the economics of climate change paper 2: economics and politics," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62704, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    3. Nicholas Stern, 2013. "Ethics, equity and the economics of climate change. Paper 2: Economics and Politics," GRI Working Papers 84b, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.
    4. John Quiggin, 2012. "Stabilizing the Global Climate: A Simple and Robust Benefit-Cost Analysis," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 94(2), pages 291-300.
    5. Tanguy Isaac & Paolo Piacquadio, 2015. "Equity and efficiency in an overlapping generation model," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 44(3), pages 549-565, March.
    6. Lugovoy, O. & Polbin, A., 2016. "On Intergenerational Distribution of the Burden of Greenhouse Gas Emissions," Journal of the New Economic Association, New Economic Association, vol. 31(3), pages 12-39.

    More about this item


    climate change; Environmental Economics and Policy; Resource /Energy Economics and Policy; Q54; Q00;

    JEL classification:

    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • Q00 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General - - - General


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ags:uqsers:152091. 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: (AgEcon Search). General contact details of provider: .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.