Introducing Procedural Utility: Not Only What, But Also How Matters
University of Zurich - Department of Economics
Bruno S. Frey
CREMA; Zeppelin University
University of Basel - Department of Business and Economics; Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA)
October 2, 2002
Zurich IEER Working Paper No. 129
People not only care about outcomes, they also value the procedures which lead to the outcomes. Procedural utility is a potentially important source of human well-being. This paper aims at introducing the concept of procedural utility into economics, and argues that it should be incorporated more widely into economic theory and empirical research. Three building blocks of a concept of procedural utility are outlined and it is suggested how procedural utility can be fruitfully integrated. Evidence from a broad range of social sciences is reviewed in order to show that procedural utility is a relevant concept for economics.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 29
Keywords: Procedural utility, outcome utility, institutions
JEL Classification: A00, A12, D60, D70
Date posted: November 3, 2002
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