Conference article

Discounting for Epistemic Reasons

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Published: 2014-08-21

ISBN: 978-91-7519-289-5

ISSN: 1650-3686 (print), 1650-3740 (online)


Utility discount rates in intergenerational economic modelling have been viewed as problematic; both for descriptive and normative reasons. However; positive discount rates can be defended normatively; in particular; it is rational for future generational utility to be discounted to take uncertainty about radical societal re- construction into account. Social discount rates are defended against objections from Parfit (1986) and Broome (2005; 2012).


Climate change; intergenerational justice; discount rate; rational decision-making; applied ethics Word Count: 7000.


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