Universiteit Antwerpen

September 12, 2013 | Iñigo González Ricoy on Democracy and Short-termism

Professor Iñigo González Ricoy (Chaire Hoover d’éthique économique et sociale ARC Postdoctoral Fellow) will give a talk on the question of whether there is a democratic case for short-termism.

The event is being organized by the Centre for Law and Cosmopolitan Values in collaboration with the Government & Law research group.

Some of our most pressing problems (e.g. global warming, overpopulation, a raising pension burden) have long-term consequences that require imposing costs in the short run (e.g. increasing taxes, cutting benefits, imposing regulatory burdens). In their face, political short-termism is increasingly seen as problematic. Political short-termism, which can be defined as the privilege of present net benefits over future net benefits in political decision-making, has been nevertheless justified under certain conditions. In his paper Professor González Ricoy explores an alternative argument which he prefers to entitle as "the democratic case for short-termism". According to this alternative argument, democratic governments are morally required to advance the preferences of their current citizens, including their intertemporal preferences, and their alone. Hence, since citizens are short-sighted in their policy preferences, democratic governments are required to enact policies that privilege more immediate payoffs.


Venue: room D.424 (D Building, Grote Kauwenberg 18)

Time: Thursday, September 12th, 12:00-13:30

For registration please contact Triantafyllos Gkouvas at  triantafyllos.gkouvas@uantwerpen.be