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  1. Stable and Unstable Choices.Anders Herlitz - 2020 - Economics and Philosophy 36 (1):113-125.
    This paper introduces a condition for rational choice that states that accepting decision methods and normative theories that sometimes entail that the act of choosing a maximal alternative renders this alternative non-maximal is irrational. The paper illustrates how certain distributive theories that ascribe importance to what the status quo is violate this condition and argues that they thereby should be rejected.
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  • Is Close Enough Good Enough?Campbell Brown - 2020 - Economics and Philosophy 36 (1):29-59.
    Should we allow grave harm to befall one individual so as to prevent minor harms befalling sufficiently many other individuals? This is a question of aggregation. Can many small harms ‘add up’, so that, collectively, they morally outweigh a greater harm? The ‘Close Enough View’ supports a moderate position: aggregation is permissible when, and only when, the conflicting harms are sufficiently similar, or ‘close enough’, to each other. This paper surveys a range of formally precise interpretations of this view, and (...)
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  • Why One Should Count Only Claims with Which One Can Sympathize.Alex Voorhoeve - 2017 - Public Health Ethics 10 (2):148-156.
    When one faces competing claims of varying strength on public resources for health, which claims count? This paper proposes the following answer. One should count, or aggregate, a person’s claim just in case one could sympathize with her desire to prioritize her own claim over the strongest competing claim. It argues that this principle yields appealing case judgments and has a plausible grounding in both sympathetic identification with each person, taken separately, and respect for the person for whom most is (...)
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  • Vaulting Intuition: Temkin's Critique of Transitivity.Alex Voorhoeve - 2013 - Economics and Philosophy 29 (3):409-425.
    In 'Rethinking the Good', Larry Temkin makes two core claims. First, the goodness of a distribution is sometimes ‘essentially comparative’ – it sometimes depends on which alternative distribution(s) it is compared to. Second, such cases threaten the transitivity of ‘all things considered better than’. I argue that the goodness of a distribution may indeed depend on what other distributions are feasible. But contrary to Temkin, I also argue that transitivity holds even when the goodness of a distribution depends on the (...)
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  • Prioritarianism in Health-Care: Resisting the Reduction to Utilitarianism.Massimo Reichlin - 2021 - Diametros 18 (69):20-32.
    Tännsjö’s book Setting Health-Care Priorities defends the view that there are three main normative theories in the domain of distributive justice, and that these theories are both highly plausible in themselves, and practically convergent in their normative conclusions. All three theories point to a somewhat radical departure from the present distribution of medical resources: in particular, they suggest redirecting resources from marginal life extension to the care of mentally ill patients. In this paper I wish to argue, firstly, that prioritarianism (...)
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  • Calibration Dilemmas in the Ethics of Distribution.Jacob M. Nebel & H. Orri Stefánsson - forthcoming - Economics and Philosophy:1-32.
    This paper presents a new kind of problem in the ethics of distribution. The problem takes the form of several “calibration dilemmas,” in which intuitively reasonable aversion to small-stakes inequalities requires leading theories of distribution to recommend intuitively unreasonable aversion to large-stakes inequalities. We first lay out a series of such dilemmas for prioritarian theories. We then consider a widely endorsed family of egalitarian views and show that they are subject to even more forceful calibration dilemmas than prioritarian theories. Finally, (...)
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  • Limited Aggregation and Risk.Seth Lazar - 2018 - Philosophy and Public Affairs 46 (2):117-159.
    Many of us believe (1) Saving a life is more important than averting any number of headaches. But what about risky cases? Surely: (2) In a single choice, if the risk of death is low enough, and the number of headaches at stake high enough, one should avert the headaches rather than avert the risk of death. And yet, if we will face enough iterations of cases like that in (2), in the long run some of those small risks of (...)
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  • How to Allocate Scarce Health Resources Without Discriminating Against People with Disabilities.Tyler M. John, Joseph Millum & David Wasserman - 2017 - Economics and Philosophy 33 (2):161-186.
    One widely used method for allocating health care resources involves the use of cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA) to rank treatments in terms of quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs) gained. CEA has been criticized for discriminating against people with disabilities by valuing their lives less than those of non-disabled people. Avoiding discrimination seems to lead to the ’QALY trap’: we cannot value saving lives equally and still value raising quality of life. This paper reviews existing responses to the QALY trap and argues that all (...)
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  • Health, Priority to the Worse Off, and Time.Anders Herlitz - 2018 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 21 (4):517-527.
    It is a common view that benefits to the worse off should be given priority when health benefits are distributed. This paper addresses how to understand who is worse off in this context when individuals are differently well off at different times. The paper argues that the view that this judgment about who is worse off should be based solely on how well off individuals are when their complete lives are considered (i.e. 'the complete lives view') is implausible in this (...)
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  • Principles of Need and the Aggregation Thesis.Erik Gustavsson & Niklas Juth - 2019 - Health Care Analysis 27 (2):77-92.
    Principles of need are constantly referred to in health care priority setting. The common denominator for any principle of need is that it will ascribe some kind of special normative weight to people being worse off. However, this common ground does not answer the question how a plausible principle of need should relate to the aggregation of benefits across individuals. Principles of need are sometimes stated as being incompatible with aggregation and sometimes characterized as accepting aggregation in much the same (...)
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  • On the Possibility of Limited Weighing of Lives.Daniel Ramöller - 2020 - Dissertation, Stockholm University
    This thesis discusses the possibility of limited moral trade-offs between different people’s welfare. In chapter 2, I introduce the two central limited trade-off conditions. First, according to minimal infinite superiority, significantly benefiting one person matters more than slightly benefiting each of any number of better-off people. Second, according to minimal finite superiority, significantly benefiting many people matters more than slightly benefiting one person. I consider both axiological and deontic interpretations of these conditions. However, I explain why none of the simple (...)
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