IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/cla/levarc/814577000000000087.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

The Evolution of Time Preference with Aggregate Uncertainty

Author

Listed:
  • Arthur J. Robson
  • Larry Samuelson

Abstract

We examine the evolutionary foundations of intertemporal preferences. When all the risk affecting survival and reproduction is idiosyncratic, evolution selects for agents who maximize the discounted sum of expected utility, discounting at the sum of the population growth rate and the mortality rate. Aggregate uncertainty concerning survival rates leads to discount rates that exceed the sum of population growth rate and death rate, and can push agents away from exponential discounting. (JEL D11, D81, D91)
(This abstract was borrowed from another version of this item.)

Suggested Citation

  • Arthur J. Robson & Larry Samuelson, 2009. "The Evolution of Time Preference with Aggregate Uncertainty," Levine's Working Paper Archive 814577000000000087, David K. Levine.
  • Handle: RePEc:cla:levarc:814577000000000087
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.dklevine.com/archive/refs4814577000000000087.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Michael Gurven & Hillard Kaplan, 2007. "Longevity Among Hunter- Gatherers: A Cross-Cultural Examination," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 33(2), pages 321-365.
    2. Arthur J. Robson & Balazs Szentes, 2008. "Evolution of Time Preference by Natural Selection: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1178-1188, June.
    3. Steffen Andersen & Glenn W. Harrison & Morten I. Lau & E. Elisabet Rutström, 2008. "Eliciting Risk and Time Preferences," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(3), pages 583-618, May.
    4. Warneryd, Karl, 2007. "Sexual reproduction and time-inconsistent preferences," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 14-16, April.
    5. Partha Dasgupta & Eric Maskin, 2005. "Uncertainty and Hyperbolic Discounting," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(4), pages 1290-1299, September.
    6. Shane Frederick & George Loewenstein & Ted O'Donoghue, 2002. "Time Discounting and Time Preference: A Critical Review," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 351-401, June.
    7. Bettinger, Eric & Slonim, Robert, 2007. "Patience among children," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 91(1-2), pages 343-363, February.
    8. David M. Bishai, 2004. "Does time preference change with age?," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 17(4), pages 583-602, December.
    9. Rogers, Alan R, 1994. "Evolution of Time Preference by Natural Selection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(3), pages 460-481, June.
    10. Lawrance, Emily C, 1991. "Poverty and the Rate of Time Preference: Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(1), pages 54-77, February.
    11. Thaler, Richard, 1981. "Some empirical evidence on dynamic inconsistency," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 8(3), pages 201-207.
    12. Menahem E. Yaari, 1965. "Uncertain Lifetime, Life Insurance, and the Theory of the Consumer," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 32(2), pages 137-150.
    13. 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.
    14. Curry, Philip A., 2001. "Decision Making under Uncertainty and the Evolution of Interdependent Preferences," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 98(2), pages 357-369, June.
    15. Robson, Arthur J., 1996. "A Biological Basis for Expected and Non-expected Utility," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 397-424, February.
    16. Al-Najjar, Nabil Ibraheem, 1995. "Decomposition and Characterization of Risk with a Continuum of Random Variables," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 63(5), pages 1195-1224, September.
    17. Larry Samuelson & Arthur J. Robson, 2007. "The Evolution of Intertemporal Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 97(2), pages 496-500, May.
    18. Martin L. Weitzman, 2007. "A Review of the Stern Review on the Economics of Climate Change," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 45(3), pages 703-724, September.
    19. Robert H. Litzenberger & Cherukuri U. Rao, 1971. "Estimates of the Marginal Rate of Time Preference and Average Risk Aversion of Investors in Electric Utility Shares: 1960-66," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 2(1), pages 265-277, Spring.
    20. Hansson, Ingemar & Stuart, Charles, 1990. "Malthusian Selection of Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 529-544, June.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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


    Cited by:

    1. Jain, Sanjay & Majumdar, Sumon & Mukand, Sharun W, 2014. "Walk the line: Conflict, state capacity and the political dynamics of reform," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 150-166.
    2. Berg, Nathan & Biele, Guido & Gigerenzer, Gerd, 2010. "Does consistency predict accuracy of beliefs?: Economists surveyed about PSA," MPRA Paper 26590, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Sivan Frenkel & Yuval Heller & Roee Teper, 2017. "The Endowment Effect as a Blessing," Working Papers 2017-06, Bar-Ilan University, Department of Economics.
    4. Jason Collins & Boris Baer & Ernst Juerg Weber, 2016. "Evolutionary Biology in Economics: A Review," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 92(297), pages 291-312, June.
    5. Roee Teper, 2014. "The Endowment Effect as a Blessing," Working Paper 5862, Department of Economics, University of Pittsburgh.
    6. Cyrus Chu, C.Y. & Chien, Hung-Ken & Lee, Ronald D., 2010. "The evolutionary theory of time preferences and intergenerational transfers," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(3), pages 451-464, December.
    7. repec:eee:jetheo:v:172:y:2017:i:c:p:410-422 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Philip A. Curry & John E. Roemer, 2012. "Evolutionary Stability of Kantian Optimization," Hacienda Pública Española, IEF, vol. 200(1), pages 131-146, March.
    9. Ricardo Alonso & Isabelle Brocas & Juan D. Carrillo, 2014. "Resource Allocation in the Brain," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 81(2), pages 501-534.
    10. Frenkel, Sivan & Heller, Yuval & Teper, Roee, 2012. "Endowment as a blessing," MPRA Paper 39430, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 30 Apr 2012.
    11. repec:kap:jbioec:v:20:y:2018:i:1:d:10.1007_s10818-017-9253-z is not listed on IDEAS
    12. Jason Collins & Boris Baer & Ernst Weber, 2015. "Sexual selection, conspicuous consumption and economic growth," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 17(2), pages 189-206, July.
    13. Jeffrey Flory & Uri Gneezy & Kenneth Leonard & John List, 2012. "Sex, competitiveness, and investment in offspring: On the origin of preferences," Artefactual Field Experiments 00072, The Field Experiments Website.
    14. Fabrizio Adriani & Silvia Sonderegger, 2014. "Evolution of similarity judgements in intertemporal choice," Discussion Papers 2014-06, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.
    15. Junji Kageyama, 2011. "The intertemporal allocation of consumption, time preference, and life-history strategies," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 79-95, July.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
    • 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

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:cla:levarc:814577000000000087. 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: (David K. Levine). General contact details of provider: http://www.dklevine.com/ .

    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.