Trading Off Generations: Infinitely Lived Agent Versus OLG
42 Pages Posted: 29 Feb 2012
Date Written: February 28, 2012
The prevailing literature discusses intergenerational trade-offs in climate change predominantly in terms of the Ramsey equation relying on the infinitely lived agent model. We discuss these trade-offs in a continuous time OLG framework and relate our results to the infinitely lived agent setting. We identify three shortcomings of the latter: First, underlying normative assumptions about social preferences cannot be deduced unambiguously. Second, the distribution among generations living at the same time cannot be captured. Third, the optimal solution may not be implementable in overlapping generations market economies.
Keywords: climate change, discounting, infinitely lived agents, intergenerational equity, overlapping generations, time preference
JEL Classification: D630, H230, Q540
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation