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Risk Aversion and the Value of Risk to Life

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  • Antoine Bommier
  • Bertrand Villeneuve

Abstract

This paper argues for an alternative methodology to estimate the value of risk to life. By relaxing the assumption of additive separability, we introduce risk aversion with respect to the length of life and show that the extended model better fits available data. This is crucial for the extrapolation stage that the evaluation of life-saving programs systematically requires. Current practice, we show, puts too little weight on the young. Our correction surpasses in magnitude that introduced by the switch from the notion of number of lives saved to the notion of years of life saved.

Suggested Citation

  • Antoine Bommier & Bertrand Villeneuve, 2004. "Risk Aversion and the Value of Risk to Life," CESifo Working Paper Series 1267, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1267
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Antoine Bommier, 2005. "Life-Cycle Theory for Human Beings," Working Papers hal-00441890, HAL.
    2. Delprat, G. & Leroux, M.-L. & Michaud, P.-C., 2016. "Evidence on individual preferences for longevity risk," Journal of Pension Economics and Finance, Cambridge University Press, vol. 15(02), pages 160-179, April.
    3. Dionne, Georges & Lebeau, Martin, 2010. "Le calcul de la valeur statistique d’une vie humaine," L'Actualité Economique, Société Canadienne de Science Economique, vol. 86(4), pages 487-530, décembre.
    4. Péter Hudomiet & Robert J. Willis, 2013. "Estimating Second Order Probability Beliefs from Subjective Survival Data," Decision Analysis, INFORMS, vol. 10(2), pages 152-170, June.
    5. Antoine Bommier, 2010. "Portfolio Choice under Uncertain Lifetime," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 12(1), pages 57-73, February.
    6. Antoine Bommier, 2008. "Rational Impatience ?," Working Papers hal-00441880, HAL.
    7. Frank N. Caliendo & Aspen Gorry & Sita Slavov, 2017. "Survival Ambiguity and Welfare," NBER Working Papers 23648, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. repec:oup:restud:v:84:y:2017:i:4:p:1472-1509. is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Franco Mariuzzo & Patrick Paul Walsh & Ciara Whelan, 2004. "EU Merger Control in Differentiated Product Industries," CESifo Working Paper Series 1312, CESifo Group Munich.
    10. Huaxiong Huang & Moshe A. Milevsky & Thomas S. Salisbury, 2012. "Optimal retirement consumption with a stochastic force of mortality," Papers 1205.2295, arXiv.org.
    11. Scott Pataya & Liang Daan, 2016. "What is the Economics of Wind Hazard Mitigation?," Journal of Business Valuation and Economic Loss Analysis, De Gruyter, vol. 11(1), pages 25-29, June.
    12. James Hammitt, 2013. "Admissible utility functions for health, longevity, and wealth: integrating monetary and life-year measures," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 47(3), pages 311-325, December.
    13. Strand, Jon, 2006. "Valuation of environmental improvements in continuous time with mortality and morbidity effects," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 229-241, August.
    14. Antoine Bommier, 2006. "Mortality, Time Preference and Life-Cycle Models," Working Papers hal-00441888, HAL.
    15. Huang, Huaxiong & Milevsky, Moshe A. & Salisbury, Thomas S., 2012. "Optimal retirement consumption with a stochastic force of mortality," Insurance: Mathematics and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(2), pages 282-291.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    value of statistical life; lifecycle behavior; cost-benefit analysis;

    JEL classification:

    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • J17 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Value of Life; Foregone Income

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