Description : Putting a price tag on the environment is controversial. This book discusses ethical and political aspects of environmental cost-benefit analysis: why controversies must be expected, why they should be taken seriously, and how they can be handled in practice. Cost-benefit analysis is commonly thought of as a method for ranking projects according to their contributions to social welfare. The starting point of the present book is different. Rather than providing a final ranking, the purpose of a project analysis is to enable participants in a democratic decision-making process to make their own well-founded rankings of projects, according to their own normative views. Since ethical and political views differ, the analysis should be useful as factual background for any reasonable social welfare judgement. This purpose faces the analyst with quite different challenges than the purpose of ranking projects. The argument of the book is based on economic theory, but with a strong emphasis on readability and applicability. It is aimed at those – economists and non-economists alike – who use or are faced with cost-benefit analysis and environmental valuation in their work: politicians, employees of ministries and regulatory agencies, students, journalists, consultants and researchers. No particular prior knowledge of economics is required.
Description : A casebook that helps students recognize and assess the strengths and weaknesses of moral arguments in the making of public policy, ETHICS AND POLITICS: CASES AND COMMENTS is a special book for a unique course in the political science curriculum. Meant to be used in conjunction with other readings on political theory or moral philosophy, part one considers the ethics of process: the morally questionable means--violence, deception, and corruption--that are most commonly used by public officials. Part two discusses the ethics of policy: the valuable but often competing ends that public officials strive to achieve. Conflicting values, scarce resources, and stakes as high as life and death combine with the duties of public office to make choices among policy goals controversial and morally difficult. In both parts, each ethical issue is paired with case studies in contemporary American politics. For example, the controversy over the treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay; or issues during the campaign and election of 2004.
Description : Economists, decision analysts, management scientists, and others have long argued that government should take a more scientific approach to decision making. Pointing to various theories for prescribing and rational izing choices, they have maintained that social goals could be achieved more effectively and at lower costs if government decisions were routinely subjected to analysis. Now, government policy makers are putting decision science to the test. Recent government actions encourage and in some cases require government decisions to be evaluated using formally defined principles 01' rationality. Will decision science pass tbis test? The answer depends on whether analysts can quickly and successfully translate their theories into practical approaches and whether these approaches promote the solution of the complex, highly uncertain, and politically sensitive problems that are of greatest concern to government decision makers. The future of decision science, perhaps even the nation's well-being, depends on the outcome. A major difficulty for the analysts who are being called upon by government to apply decision-aiding approaches is that decision science has not yet evolved a universally accepted methodology for analyzing social decisions involving risk. Numerous approaches have been proposed, including variations of cost-benefit analysis, decision analysis, and applied social welfare theory. Each of these, however, has its limitations and deficiencies and none has a proven track record for application to govern ment decisions involving risk. Cost-benefit approaches have been exten sively applied by the government, but most applications have been for decisions that were largely risk-free.
Description : This second edition of International Environmental Law, Policy, and Ethics revises and expands this groundbreaking study into the question of why the environment is protected in the international arena. This question is rarely asked because it is assumed that each member of the international community wants to achieve the same ends. However, in his innovative study of international environmental ethics, Alexander Gillespie explodes this myth. He shows how nations, like individuals, create environmental laws and policies which are continually inviting failure, as such laws can often be riddled with inconsistencies, and be ultimately contradictory in purpose. Specifically, he seeks a nexus between the reasons why nations protect the environment, how these reasons are reflected in law and policy, and what complications arise from these choices. This book takes account of the numerous developments in international environmental law and policy that have taken place the publication of the first edition, most notably at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development and the 2012 'Rio + 20' United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. Furthermore, it addresses recent debates on the economic value of nature, and the problems of the illegal trade in species and toxic waste. The cultural context has also been considerably advanced in the areas of both intangible and tangible heritage, with increasing attention being given to conservation, wildlife management, and the notion of protected areas. The book investigates the ways in which progress has been made regarding humane trapping and killing of animals, and how, in contrast, the Great Apes initiative, and similar work with whales, have failed. Finally, the book addresses the fact that while the notion of ecosystem management has been embraced by a number of environmental regimes, it has thus far failed as an international philosophy.
Description : Most controversies in environmental policy are rooted in clashes of values involving science and technology versus humanism, economic efficiency versus humanism, the role of nature in society and the role of government in society. The author discusses how America makes environmental policy - at the Federal and State levels as well as their enforcement agencies designed to protect and regulate at the same time. Portney examines legislation, public opinion, implementation or non-implementation relative to the debates over water, air and soil management.
Description : The world is increasingly concerned with bridging the developmental gap between the developed and developing countries. With the establishment of a number of institutions for funding the projects including the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and many other agencies, the need to develop mechanisms to assess economically viable projects is more important than ever. The Social-Cost Benefit Analysis (SCBA) is an important technique used in formulating, appraising, and evaluating projects. It is a facet of applied welfare economics which is increasingly being used to identify and assess public projects in both developing and developed countries. This volume presents a comprehensive view of cost-benefit analysis in its theoretical and applied dimensions. Both theory and case studies are presented. The theoretical setting for Cost-Benefit Analysis is established by the first five chapters-"Spatial General Equilibrium and Cost-Benefit Analysis," by David M. Newbery; "Optimum Growth Theory and Social Time Preference: A Computerized Mathematical Modeling Exercise to Choose a Social Discount Rate," by Sardar M. N. Islam; "A Theoretical Inquiry of the Axiomatic Consistency of Distributional Weights used in Cost-Benefit Analysis," by Giuseppe Munda; "The Output Gap: Measurement, Related Concepts, and Policy Implications," by Parameswar Nandakumar; and "A Methodological Comparison of Theoretical Approaches in Dichotomous Choice Contingent Valuation," by John C. Whitehead. This book will be useful as a reference text by professors and students in project appraisal classes and will be of equal value to analysts, planners, and interested general readers. K. Puttaswamaiah is the senior director, Planning Department, Government of Karnataka State, India. He has written or edited fourteen books. He is the founding editor of the Indian (now International) Journal of Applied Economics & Econometrics.
Description : Autonomous cars, drones, and electronic surveillance systems are examples of technologies that raise serious ethical issues. In this analytic investigation, Martin Peterson articulates and defends five moral principles for addressing ethical issues related to new and existing technologies: the cost-benefit principle, the precautionary principle, the sustainability principle, the autonomy principle, and the fairness principle. It is primarily the method developed by Peterson for articulating and analyzing the five principles that is novel. He argues that geometric concepts such as points, lines, and planes can be put to work for clarifying the structure and scope of these and other moral principles. This geometric account is based on the Aristotelian dictum that like cases should be treated alike, meaning that the degree of similarity between different cases can be represented as a distance in moral space. The more similar a pair of cases are from a moral point of view, the closer is their location in moral space. A case that lies closer in moral space to a paradigm case for some principle p than to any paradigm for any other principle should be analyzed by applying principle p. The book also presents empirical results from a series of experimental studies in which experts (philosophers) and laypeople (engineering students) have been asked to apply the geometric method to fifteen real-world cases. The empirical findings indicate that experts and laypeople do in fact apply geometrically construed moral principles in roughly, but not exactly, the manner advocates of the geometric method believe they ought to be applied.
Description : Elizabeth Anderson offers a new theory of value and rationality that rejects cost-benefit analysis in our social lives and in our ethical theories. This account of the plurality of values thus offers a new approach, beyond welfare economics and traditional theories of justice, for assessing the ethical limitations of the market. In this light, Anderson discusses several contemporary controversies involving the proper scope of the market, including commercial surrogate motherhood, privatization of public services, and the application of cost-benefit analysis to issues of environmental protection.
Description : This book presents a new perspective on the link between economic growth and environmental change. All the key issues in environmental economics are covered, including: * industry, creation and environmental change * air, water and toxic pollution * economic growth and the limits of environmental regulation * ethics and the limits of environmental economics. The central thesis is that whilst new industries are necessary for economic growth, their development creates new environmental problems which become difficult to reverse. An alternative approach, 'steady-state economics', based on the concept of ethical commitment, is put forward as a possible alternative to a high-growth, environmentally destructive economy. Providing a welcome alternative to conventional, neoclassical microeconomic thought on environmental issues, this will be vital reading for students of environmental economics and related subjects.