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Economic Development and Efficiency Criteria in the Satisfaction of Basic Needs


  • Chichilnisky, Graciela


This paper aims to give a possible mathematical formalization of economic efficiency in an economy concerned with attaining acceptable levels of per capita consumption of basic goods, subject to economic and social welfare constraints. This model was constructed as an underlying mathematical economic structure of Latin American world model of Fundacion Bariloche. It has been used in a modified form, as a feasibility study of possible growth paths id such underdeveloped economies. The model has a methodological intersection with the theory of optimal economic growth, and that the efficient growth paths are solutions of a constrained optimization problem: they optimize a social welfare criterion satisfying constraints given by a set of differential equations with initial values. In the usual optimal growth models these differential equations represent production-investment-consumption relations through time, formalizing a trade-off between present and future consumption (more present consumption implies less present investment). Here in addition, the admissible paths also satisfy a differential equation which relates the rate of population growth to the level of consumption of basic goods (a proxy standard of living) which introduces further relationships between present and future consumption. The admissible paths are assumed to satisfy additional requirements per capita consumption of all basic goods must be non-decreasing throughout time. This is a welfare consideration for countries with low levels of consumption. A brief description of the dynamics of the model in sequential form can be given as follows. Initial values of production, consumption, and investment in three basic sectors are given (nutrition, housing, health and education), and in a fourth sector of services and consumption foods complementary to the production and consumption of the three basic goods.

Suggested Citation

  • Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1976. "Economic Development and Efficiency Criteria in the Satisfaction of Basic Needs," MPRA Paper 7980, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 14 Mar 1977.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:7980

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    Cited by:

    1. Andrea Beltratti & Graciela Chichilnisky & Geoffrey Heal, 1993. "Sustainable Growth and the Green Golden Rule," NBER Working Papers 4430, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Charles Figuières & Hervé Guyomard & Gilles Rotillon, 2010. "Sustainable Development: Between Moral Injunctions and Natural Constraints," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 2(11), pages 1-15, November.
    3. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1989. "North-South trade and basic needs," MPRA Paper 8357, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Wei, W. & Alvarez, I. & Martin, S., 2013. "Sustainability analysis: Viability concepts to consider transient and asymptotical dynamics in socio-ecological tourism-based systems," Ecological Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 251(C), pages 103-113.
    5. Graciela Chichilnisky, 1998. "The knowledge revolution," The Journal of International Trade & Economic Development, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 7(1), pages 39-54.
    6. Alvarez-Cuadrado, Francisco & Van Long, Ngo, 2009. "A mixed Bentham-Rawls criterion for intergenerational equity: Theory and implications," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 154-168, September.
    7. Graciela Chichilnisky, 1996. "An axiomatic approach to sustainable development," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer;The Society for Social Choice and Welfare, vol. 13(2), pages 231-257, April.
    8. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1998. "Sustainable development and North-South trade," MPRA Paper 8894, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Chichilnisky, Graciela & Heal, Geoffrey & Beltratti, Andrea, 1995. "The Green Golden Rule," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 49(2), pages 175-179, August.
    10. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 2009. "Avoiding extinction: equal treatment of the present and the future," Economics - The Open-Access, Open-Assessment E-Journal, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), vol. 3, pages 1-25.
    11. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1990. "Large and small models: their suitability for North-South issues," MPRA Paper 8354, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1977. "Development patterns and the international order," MPRA Paper 7991, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    13. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1990. "Global models and North-South relations," MPRA Paper 8126, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    14. Chichilnisky, Graciela, 1995. "The economic value of the Earth's resources," MPRA Paper 8491, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    15. Chichilnisky, Graciela & Cole, Sam, 1979. "A model of technology, domestic distribution and North-South relations," MPRA Paper 7999, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    Basic needs; welfare; social welfare; model; modelling; modeling; growth; economics growth; optimization; population growth; growth paths; global;

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
    • O4 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity


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