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Why and How Should We Represent Future Generations in Policymaking?

Beyleveld, Deryck; Düwell, Marcus; Spahn, Andreas

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Marcus Düwell

Andreas Spahn


This paper analyses the main challenges (particularly those deriving from the non-identity problem and epistemic uncertainty concerning the preferences of future persons) to the idea that we should and can represent future generations in our present policymaking. It argues that these challenges can and should be approached from the perspective of human rights. To this end it introduces and sketches the main features of a human rights framework derived from the moral theory of Alan Gewirth. It indicates how this framework can be grounded philosophically, sketches the main features and open questions of the framework and its grounding, and shows how it can be used to deal with the challenges to the idea that future generations have rights that can be represented in our policymaking.


Beyleveld, D., Düwell, M., & Spahn, A. (2015). Why and How Should We Represent Future Generations in Policymaking?. Jurisprudence, 6(3), 549-566.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Jun 27, 2014
Online Publication Date Nov 3, 2015
Publication Date Sep 2, 2015
Deposit Date Mar 1, 2016
Publicly Available Date Mar 1, 2017
Journal Jurisprudence
Print ISSN 2040-3313
Electronic ISSN 2040-3321
Publisher Taylor and Francis Group
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 6
Issue 3
Pages 549-566


Accepted Journal Article (400 Kb)

Copyright Statement
This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis Group in Jurisprudence on 01/09/2015, available online at:

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