Cost and benefit including value of life, health and environmental damage measured in time units

Ove Dalager Ditlevsen, Peter Friis-Hansen

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    Key elements of the authors' work on money equivalent time allocation to costs and benefits in risk analysis are put together as an entity. This includes the data supported dimensionless analysis of an equilibrium relation between total population work time and gross domestic product leading to the definition of the life quality time allocation index (LQTAI). On the basis of a postulate of invariance of the LQTAI, a rule is obtained for allocating societal value in terms of time to avoid life shortening fatalities as well as serious injuries that shorten the life in good health. The excess of this societal value over the actual costs, used by the owner for economically optimizing an activity, motivates a simple risk accept criterion suited to be imposed on the owner by the public. An illustration is given concerning allocation of economical means for mitigation of loss of life and health on a ferry in fire. Finally a definition is suggested for a nature preservation willingness index, which by an invariance postulate leads to a rational format for allocating means to avoid pollution accidents.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalStructural Safety
    Issue number2
    Pages (from-to)136-142
    Publication statusPublished - 2009


    • Stochastic equilibrium economy
    • Economy developing path
    • Time equivalent productivity
    • Life Quality Time Allocation Index (LQTAI)
    • Life Quality Index (LQI)


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