Saving future lives. A comparison of three discounting models

Health Econ. 1997 Jul-Aug;6(4):341-50. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1099-1050(199707)6:4<341::aid-hec277>;2-y.


This paper compares three models of intertemporal choice concerning saving future lives: the constant discounting model, the proportional discounting model and the hyperbolic discounting model. The three models were investigated using data collected from the general public. Since these data have a multilevel structure, ordinary least-squares (OLS) estimates were supplemented by multilevel analysis. There is evidence in favour of the proportional (and to a lesser extent) the hyperbolic model over the constant discounting model. There is clear evidence for this data set that multilevel analysis is more appropriate than OLS.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis / methods*
  • Female
  • Health Services Research / methods*
  • Humans
  • Least-Squares Analysis
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Econometric*
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Scotland
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Value of Life*