A Mixed Bentham-Rawls Criterion For Intergenerational Equity: Theory And Implications
Ranking development programs using integrals of discounted utilities can yield drastic consequences that offend our sense of justice. New alternative social welfare criteria should be considered. A reaction to discounted utilitarianism is to moderate its effects by adding to the social welfare function a second term that takes seriously the welfare of the generations that live in the far distant future. Chichilnisky proposes a social welfare function that has two desirable properties: (i) non-dictatorship of the present, and (ii) non-dictatorship of the future. However, in many economic models, there exists no optimal path under the Chichilnisky criterion. We introduce a third desideratum: "non-dictatorship of the least advantaged," and propose a new welfare criterion that is morally compelling. It is a weighted average of two terms: (a) the sum of discounted utilities, and (b) the utility level of the least advantaged generation. We derive necessary conditions to characterize growth paths that satisfy our criterion, and show that in some models with familiar dynamic specifications, an optimal path exists and displays appealing characteristics.
|Date of creation:||May 2007|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: (514) 398-3030
Fax: (514) 398-4938
Web page: http://www.repec.mcgill.ca
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Graciela Chichilnisky, 1996.
"An axiomatic approach to sustainable development,"
Social Choice and Welfare,
Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 231-257, April.
- Geir B. Asheim & Wolfgang Buchholz, 2000.
"The Hartwick Rule: Myths and Facts,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
299, CESifo Group Munich.
- Asheim, G.B. & Buchholz, W. & Withagen, C.A.A.M., 2002. "The Hartwick Rule : Myths and Facts," Discussion Paper 2002-52, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
- Asheim,G.B. & Buchholz,W., 2000. "The Hartwick rule : myths and facts," Memorandum 11/2000, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
- R. M. Solow, 1973. "Intergenerational Equity and Exhaustable Resources," Working papers 103, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Department of Economics.
- John C. V. Pezzey, 2002.
"Sustainability Policy and Environmental Policy,"
Economics and Environment Network Working Papers
0211, Australian National University, Economics and Environment Network.
- Heal, G., 1998. "Valuing the Future: Economic Theory and Sustainability," Papers 98-10, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
- Solow, Robert M, 1986. " On the Intergenerational Allocation of Natural Resources," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 88(1), pages 141-49.
- Fleurbaey, Marc & Michel, Philippe, 2003.
"Intertemporal equity and the extension of the Ramsey criterion,"
Journal of Mathematical Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 39(7), pages 777-802, September.
- FLEURBAEY, Marc & MICHEL, Philippe, 1997. "Intertemporal equity and the extension of the Ramsey criterion," CORE Discussion Papers 1997004, Université catholique de Louvain, Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE).
- M. Fleurbaey & P. Michel, 1997. "Intertemporal equity and the extension of the Ramsey criterion," THEMA Working Papers 97-11, THEMA (THéorie Economique, Modélisation et Applications), Université de Cergy-Pontoise.
- Kaushik Basu & Tapan Mitra, 2003.
"Aggregating Infinite Utility Streams with InterGenerational Equity: The Impossibility of Being Paretian,"
Econometric Society, vol. 71(5), pages 1557-1563, 09.
- Basu, Kaushik & Mitra, Tapan, 2003. "Aggregating Infinite Utility Streams with Inter-generational Equity: The Impossibility of Being Paretian," Working Papers 03-03, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.
- Pezzey, John C V & Withagen, Cees A, 1998. " The Rise, Fall and Sustainability of Capital-Resource Economies," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 100(2), pages 513-27, June.
- Charles Figuières & Mabel Tidball, 2012.
"Sustainable exploitation of a natural resource: a satisfying use of Chichilnisky’s criterion,"
Springer, vol. 49(2), pages 243-265, February.
- Charles Figuières & Mabel Tidball, 2006. "Sustainable exploitation of a natural resource: a satisfying use of Chichilnisky's criterion," Working Papers 06-03, LAMETA, Universtiy of Montpellier, revised Sep 2006.
- Dixit, Avinash & Hammond, Peter & Hoel, Michael, 1980. "On Hartwick's Rule for Regular Maximin Paths of Capital Accumulation and Resource Depletion," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(3), pages 551-56, April.
- Asheim, Geir B. & Buchholz, Wolfgang & Tungodden, Bertil, 2001.
Journal of Environmental Economics and Management,
Elsevier, vol. 41(3), pages 252-268, May.
- Dasgupta, Partha, 1974. "On some alternative criteria for justice between generations," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 405-423, November.
- repec:cup:cbooks:9780521331586 is not listed on IDEAS
- John E. Roemer, 2003.
"Eclectic Distributional Ethics,"
Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers
1408, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
- Withagen, Cees & B. Asheim, Geir, 1998. "Characterizing sustainability: The converse of Hartwick's rule," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 23(1), pages 159-165, September.
- Geir B. Asheim & Wolfgang Buchholz, 2002.
"A General Approach to Welfare Measurement through National Income Accounting,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
831, CESifo Group Munich.
- Geir B. Asheim & Wolfgang Buchholz, 2004. "A General Approach to Welfare Measurement through National Income Accounting," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 106(2), pages 361-384, 06.
- Asheim, Geir & Buchholz, Wolfgang, 2003. "A General Approach to Welfare Measurement through National Income Accounting," Memorandum 32/2002, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
- Graciela Chichilnisky, 1997. "What Is Sustainable Development?," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 73(4), pages 467-491.
- Kirk Hamilton & John Hartwick, 2005. "Investing exhaustible resource rents and the path of consumption," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 38(2), pages 615-621, May.
- Brander, James A & Taylor, M Scott, 1998. "The Simple Economics of Easter Island: A Ricardo-Malthus Model of Renewable Resource Use," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(1), pages 119-38, March.
- Asheim, Geir B., 2000.
"Green national accounting: why and how?,"
Environment and Development Economics,
Cambridge University Press, vol. 5(01), pages 25-48, February.
- Chichilnisky, Graciela & Beltratti, Andrea & Heal, Geoffrey, 1998. "Sustainable use of renewable resources, Chapter 2.1," MPRA Paper 8815, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Zame, William R., 2007. "Can intergenerational equity be operationalized?," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 2(2), June.
- Basu, Kaushik & Mitra, Tapan, 2003.
"Utilitarianism for Infinite Utility Streams: A New Welfare Criterion and Its Axiomatic Characterization,"
03-05, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.
- Basu, Kaushik & Mitra, Tapan, 2007. "Utilitarianism for infinite utility streams: A new welfare criterion and its axiomatic characterization," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 133(1), pages 350-373, March.
- Bossert, Walter & Sprumont, Yves & Suzumura, Kotaro, 2007. "Ordering infinite utility streams," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 135(1), pages 579-589, July.
- repec:cup:cbooks:9780521297615 is not listed on IDEAS
- Asheim, Geir B, 1988. "Rawlsian Intergenerational Justice as a Markov-Perfect Equilibrium in a Resource Technology," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(3), pages 469-83, July.
- Chichilnisky, G., 1994. "Sustainable Development and Social Choice," Papers 94-02, Columbia - Graduate School of Business.
- Hartwick, John M, 1977.
"Intergenerational Equity and the Investing of Rents from Exhaustible Resources,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 67(5), pages 972-74, December.
- John Hartwick, 1976. "Intergenerational Equity and the Investing of Rents from Exhaustible Resources," Working Papers 220, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
- Kirk Hamilton & Cees Withagen, 2007. "Savings growth and the path of utility," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 40(2), pages 703-713, May.
- Mitra, Tapan, 1983. "Limits on Population Growth under Exhaustible Resource Constraints," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 24(1), pages 155-68, February.
- Svensson, Lars-Gunnar, 1980. "Equity among Generations," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 48(5), pages 1251-56, July.
- Geir Asheim & Bertil Tungodden, 2004. "Resolving distributional conflicts between generations," Economic Theory, Springer, vol. 24(1), pages 221-230, 07.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mcl:mclwop:2007-03. 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: (Shama Rangwala)The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Shama Rangwala to update the entry or send us the correct address
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.