Title: Reflections on discounting: some philosophical remarks

Authors: Konrad Ott

Addresses: Environmental Ethics, Department of Biology, Ernst Moritz Arndt Universitat, Greifswald, Germany

Abstract: This paper touches on some crucial ethical topics that are embedded in the economic technique of discounting. It is structured as follows. After a brief introduction, the notion of reflection is clarified in order to make room for a certain perspective from which the economic practice of discounting might be judged appropriately. Some distinctions are drawn, and some common patterns of argument are outlined, which might be helpful for further debate. At the end of the paper, some proposals for modifications, weighings and adjustments of discounting are mentioned. Finally, an argument why discounting should be replaced by discourse-oriented assessments is set out.

Keywords: colonisation of the lifeworld; discounting; ethical justification; practical reason.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSD.2003.004221

International Journal of Sustainable Development, 2003 Vol.6 No.1, pp.7 - 24

Available online: 05 Apr 2004 *

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