Should the wellbeing of future generations condition the policies of today?

In February 2022, the top wellbeing experts of the World Wellbeing Panel were asked how government policies should relate to future generations, something of great concern to investments in the environment, schooling, or infrastructure, which all benefit the unborn.

The two statements proposed were:

(i) “When policymakers compare current and future wellbeing outcomes, they should treat future generations identically with the current generation (as if behind a Rawlsian veil of ignorance)”; and

(ii) “If government were considering the closure of an IVF clinic they need not count the foregone wellbeing of unborn IVF children because those children are never born.

The panel was unusually divided on the issue.

What do you think?

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