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Encyclopedia > Value of life

The value of life (or price of life) is an economic or moral value assigned to life in general, or to specific living organisms. In social and political sciences, it is the marginal cost of death prevention in a certain class of circumstances. As such, it is a statistical term, the cost of reducing the (average) number of deaths by one. It is an important issue in a wide range of disciplines including economics, health care, political economy, insurance, worker safety, environmental impact assessment, and globalization. Discussions about the value of life would be more-or-less limited to university philosophy departments and religious groups if it were not for the fact that this value must be calculated in an exact quantitative way by practitioners in these disciplines. Something has an intrinsic value when it is valuable in itself or for its own sake. See also Universal values External links Intrinsic vs. ... Economics (deriving from the Greek words οίκω [okos], house, and νέμω [nemo], rules hence household management) is the social science that studies the allocation of scarce resources to satisfy unlimited wants. ... This article is about the use of the moral in storytelling. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... This article is about life in general. ... The social sciences are groups of academic disciplines that study the human aspects of the world. ... The Politics series Politics Portal This box:      Political Science is the field concerning the theory and practice of politics and the description and analysis of political systems and political behaviour. ... In economics and finance, marginal cost is the change in total cost that arises when the quantity produced changes by one unit. ... For Wikipedia statistics, see m:Statistics Statistics is the science and practice of developing human knowledge through the use of empirical data expressed in quantitative form. ... Averages redirects here. ... Face-to-face trading interactions on the New York Stock Exchange trading floor. ... A physician visiting the sick in a hospital. ... The Politics series Politics Portal This box:      Political economy was the original term for the study of production, the acts of buying and selling, and their relationships to laws, customs and government. ... Insurance, in law and economics, is a form of risk management primarily used to hedge against the risk of a contingent loss. ... Economic globalization has had an impact on the worldwide integration of different cultures. ...


When deciding on the appropriate level of health care spending, a typical method is to equate the marginal cost of the health care to the marginal benefits received. In order to obtain a marginal benefit amount, some estimation of the dollar value of life is required.


The value of life is most commonly determined by looking at a person's willingness to pay or willingness to accept. Willingness to pay can be found by asking a person how much they would be willing to pay for good health outcomes (or to reduce bad health outcomes). It can also be determined by looking at a person's purchasing choices. An example would be looking at how much more a person would be willing to pay for airbags in his/her car. To determine willingness to pay one would look at the change in the price that occurs because of the added airbags and divide that by the change in the risk of death. Willingness to accept is determined by looking at how much more you would have to pay someone to put them in a position where they are more likely to have bad health outcomes. This could be seen by changing a person's location from a less polluted city to a more polluted city and looking at the difference in wages between the two areas.


Typically, the value of life has been placed at $3 million per life and $100,000 per year of life.[citation needed]


In biosafety, workplace safety, and insurance, it is also necessary to put a precise economic value on a given life. There can be no such thing as a perfectly safe or risk free system - one can always make a system safer by spending more money. However, there are diminishing returns involved. In travel, the economic value of life, for safety purposes, varies between around $1,000,000 for trains, and around $20,000 for automobiles.[citation needed] Biosafety: prevention of large-scale loss of biological integrity, focusing both on ecology and human health. ... Insurance, in law and economics, is a form of risk management primarily used to hedge against the risk of a contingent loss. ... In microeconomics, Production is simply the conversion of inputs into outputs. ...


There are also intergenerational aspects to the value of life. Economists calculate social discount rates based on the interest rates prevalent in financial markets. The higher the social discount rate, the more future generations are devalued relative to the current generation. Social Dscount Rate Abbreviated SDR IT has many definitions: 1- its the amount of consumption opportunities that household ready to give up to participate in a governmental project 2- the economic return on a certain project in contrast with the finanacial return measures such as ROI (return on invesment... In finance, financial markets facilitate: The raising of capital (in the capital markets); The transfer of risk (in the derivatives markets); and International trade (in the currency markets). ...


The anti-globalization movement objects to the obvious disparity between the value assigned to life in developed nations versus developing nations - most particularly as reflected in World Bank, WTO, and IMF decisions. They point to such numbers as the IPCC assumption that a developed nation can pay fifteen times more than a developing nation to avert a death due to climate change, as evidence of systematic neglect of the value of life in the poorer South, as opposed to the more developed North. Some also fear that more standard global value of life mechanisms could have consequences for the working people in the developed nations. Anti-WEF grafiti in Lausanne. ... A developed country is a country that is technologically advanced and that enjoys a relatively high standard of living. ... A developing country is a country with low average income compared to the world average. ... The World Bank logo The World Bank (the Bank) is a part of the World Bank Group (WBG), is a bank that makes loans to developing countries for development programs with the stated goal of reducing poverty. ... WTO redirects here. ... The flag of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is the international organization entrusted with overseeing the global financial system by monitoring foreign exchange rates and balance of payments, as well as offering technical and financial assistance when asked. ... IPCC is science authority for the UNFCCC The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to assess the risk of human-induced climate change. The Panel is open to all...


A few also debate as to whether animal life deserves to have a value assigned to it, such as in the field of biodiversity. A moral argument associated with this is the Great Ape personhood debate, which has become especially poignant since the recent advocacy by some scientists to move the two chimpanzee species into the genus Homo (previously it was considered a hominid). Rainforests are among the most biodiverse ecosystems on earth Biodiversity is the variation of life forms within a given ecosystem, biome or for the entire Earth. ... Advocates of Great Ape personhood consider common chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas, and orangutans (the hominid apes) to be persons. ... Type species Simia troglodytes Blumenbach, 1775 distribution of Species Pan troglodytes Pan paniscus Chimpanzee, often shortened to chimp, is the common name for the two extant species of apes in the genus Pan. ... For other uses, see Genus (disambiguation). ... Species Homo sapiens See text for extinct species. ... Genera The hominids are the members of the biological family Hominidae (the great apes), which includes humans, chimpanzees, gorillas, and orangutans. ...


Some advocates feel that putting an economic price tag on life is "inhumane", because every life is "priceless". However, with a limited supply of resources or infrastructural capital (e.g. ambulances), or skill at hand, it is impossible to save every life, so some trade-off must be made. Also, this argumentation neglects the statistical context of the term. It is not commonly attached to lives of individuals or used to compare the value of one person's life relative to another person's. It is mainly used in circumstances of saving lives as opposed to taking or "producing" lives. Rainforest on Fatu-Hiva, Marquesas Islands Natural resources are naturally occurring substances that are considered valuable in their relatively unmodified (natural) form. ... Infrastructural capital refers to any physical means of production or means of protection beyond that which can be gathered or found directly in nature, i. ... For Wikipedia statistics, see m:Statistics Statistics is the science and practice of developing human knowledge through the use of empirical data expressed in quantitative form. ...


Refusal to assign any value to life often leads, ironically, to no value being attached to life. So, treating an endangered human life, or even the value of Earth itself, in economics formally as a commodity can be morally justified, in that risks of failure to protect it, thus become costs. In economics, value of Earth is the ultimate in ecosystem valuation, and important to value of life calculations. ... Face-to-face trading interactions on the New York Stock Exchange trading floor. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ...


In non-economic terms, the value of a human life is only determined by oneself regardless of how others feel about the individual. If one does not believe there is value in oneself there will be no value.


References

Economist Kevin M. Murphy is a professor at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business and a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution. ... Thomas Crombie Tom Schelling (born 14 April 1921) is an American economist and professor of foreign affairs, national security, nuclear strategy, and arms control at the School of Public Policy at University of Maryland College Park. ...

  Results from FactBites:
 
Life Insurance Cash Value, Insurance Appraisal, Life Insurance Policy Appraisal, Life Insurance Surrender Cash Value, ... (610 words)
Every life insurance owner should have their policies appraised to determine the life settlement value which may greatly exceed the life insurance cash value.
A life insurance policy appraisal will provide you with the life settlement value versus the life insurance cash value as well as analyze multiple options on the best utilization of this asset.
Sell your current policy for its fair market value and use the life settlement proceeds to subsidize the future premiums on a new policy.
Value of life - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (707 words)
The value of life is an economic or moral value assigned to life in general, or to specific living organisms.
Discussions about the value of life would be more-or-less limited to university philosophy departments and religious groups if it were not for the fact that this value must be calculated in an exact quantitative way by practitioners in these disciplines.
So, treating an endangered human life, or even the value of Earth itself, in economics formally as a commodity can be morally justified, in that risks of failure to protect it, thus become costs.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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