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Fair management of social risk

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We provide a general method for extending social preferences defined for riskless economic environments to the context of risk and uncertainty. We apply the method to the problems of managing unemployment allowances (in the context of macroeconomic fluctuations) and catastrophic risks (in the context of climate change). The method guarantees ex post fairness and pays attention to individuals' risk attitudes, while ensuring rationality properties for social preferences, revisiting basic ideas from Harsanyi's celebrated aggregation theorem (Harsanyi, 1955). The social preferences that we obtain do not always take the form of an expected utility criterion, but they always satisfy statewise dominance. When we require social preferences to be expected utilities, we obtain a variant of Harsanyi's result under a weak version of the Pareto principle, and a maximin criterion under a stronger Pareto requirement, whenever the ex post social ordering does not depend on people risk attitudes. We also show how non-expected utility individual preferences can be accommodated in the approach

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  • Marc Fleurbaey & Stéphane Zuber, 2014. "Fair management of social risk," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 14016rr, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne, revised Dec 2016.
  • Handle: RePEc:mse:cesdoc:14016rr
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    Cited by:

    1. McCarthy, David & Mikkola, Kalle & Thomas, Teruji, 2020. "Utilitarianism with and without expected utility," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 77-113.
    2. Takashi Hayashi & Michele Lombardi, 2019. "Fair social decision under uncertainty and belief disagreements," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 67(4), pages 775-816, June.
    3. Anne‐Laure Samson & Erik Schokkaert & Clémence Thébaut & Brigitte Dormont & Marc Fleurbaey & Stéphane Luchini & Carine Van de Voorde, 2018. "Fairness in cost‐benefit analysis: A methodology for health technology assessment," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 27(1), pages 102-114, January.
    4. McCarthy, David & Mikkola, Kalle & Thomas, Teruji, 2016. "Utilitarianism with and without expected utility," MPRA Paper 72578, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Marc Fleurbaey, 2018. "Welfare economics, risk and uncertainty," Canadian Journal of Economics/Revue canadienne d'économique, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 51(1), pages 5-40, February.
    6. Marc Fleurbaey & Stéphane Zuber, 2021. "Fair Utilitarianism," American Economic Journal: Microeconomics, American Economic Association, vol. 13(2), pages 370-401, May.
    7. Piacquadio, Paolo G., 2020. "The ethics of intergenerational risk," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 186(C).
    8. Thierry Marchant, 2019. "Utilitarianism without individual utilities," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 53(1), pages 1-19, June.
    9. Elias Aptus & Volker Britz & Hans Gersbach, 2020. "Crisis Contracts," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 70(1), pages 121-164, July.
    10. Miyagishima, Kaname, 2023. "Time-consistent fair social choice," Theoretical Economics, Econometric Society, vol. 18(3), July.
    11. Takashi Hayashi, 2019. "What Should Society Maximise Under Uncertainty?," The Japanese Economic Review, Springer, vol. 70(4), pages 446-478, December.
    12. Kaname Miyagishima, 2022. "Efficiency, equity, and social rationality under uncertainty," Economic Theory, Springer;Society for the Advancement of Economic Theory (SAET), vol. 73(1), pages 237-255, February.
    13. Miyagishima, Kaname, 2019. "Fair criteria for social decisions under uncertainty," Journal of Mathematical Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 77-87.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Social choice; fairness; uncertainty; social risk;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement

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