Valuing Foreign Lives

86 Pages Posted: 29 Mar 2013 Last revised: 8 Mar 2014

See all articles by Arden Rowell

Arden Rowell

University of Illinois College of Law

Lesley Wexler

University of Illinois College of Law

Date Written: March 7, 2014

Abstract

Democratic governments are typically concerned with protecting the lives of their own citizens. But decisions made by domestic institutions often affect foreign as well as domestic lives. In such circumstances, domestic institutions must choose how many public resources to devote to protecting foreign lives. This Article argues that foreign valuations implicate distinctive psychosocial, philosophical, economic, and political challenges that deserve their own analyses; analyzes existing practices of foreign life valuation in US regulatory and nonregulatory contexts; and presents a theoretical framework for evaluating when and how to value foreign lives within domestic policymaking.

Keywords: valuation of lives, military policy, regulatory policy, international law, cost-benefit analysis, social cost of carbon, SCC, foreign policy, disaster assistance, international armed conflict, torts committed by armed forces, othering, psychic numbing, obligations to foreign persons, VSL

JEL Classification: N40, I18, L51, K23, F35, K33, K32, K13, K00, K20, K30, K29, Q26

Suggested Citation

Rowell, Arden and Wexler, Lesley M., Valuing Foreign Lives (March 7, 2014). Illinois Program in Law, Behavior and Social Science Paper LBSS13-26; Illinois Public Law Research Paper No. 13-42. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2240564 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2240564

Arden Rowell (Contact Author)

University of Illinois College of Law ( email )

504 E. Pennsylvania Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820
United States

Lesley M. Wexler

University of Illinois College of Law ( email )

504 E. Pennsylvania Avenue
Champaign, IL 61820
United States

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