Pareto Principles in Infinite Ethics

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Recommended citation: Askell, Amanda. ‘Pareto Principles in Infinite Ethics.’ PhD thesis, New York University (2018). https://askell.io/publication/pareto-principles-in-infinite-ethics

In this thesis I argue that ethical rankings of worlds that contain infinite levels of wellbeing ought to be consistent with the Pareto principle, which says that if two worlds contain the same agents and some agents are better off in the first world than they are in the second and no agents are worse off than they are in the second, then the first world is better than the second. I show that if we accept four axioms – the Pareto principle, transitivity, an axiom stating that populations of worlds can be permuted, and the claim that if the ‘at least as good as’ relation holds between two worlds then it holds between qualitative duplicates of this world pair – then we must conclude that there is ubiquitous incomparability between infinite worlds.

Read the thesis here

Recommended citation: Askell, Amanda. ‘Pareto Principles in Infinite Ethics.’ PhD thesis, New York University (2018).

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