Econometrica: Sep 2003, Volume 71, Issue 5

Aggregating Infinite Utility Streams with InterGenerational Equity: The Impossibility of Being Paretian

https://doi.org/10.1111/1468-0262.00458
p. 1557-1563

Kaushik Basu, Tapan Mitra

It has been known that, in aggregating infinite utility streams, there does not exist any social welfare function, which satisfies the axioms of Pareto, intergenerational equity, and continuity. We show that the impossibility result persists even without imposing the continuity axiom, and in frameworks allowing for more general domains of utilities than those used in the existing literature.

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