Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Question for Class Discussion

Here is a question I will be asking my freshman seminar this week:

You are a utilitarian social planner. You have a limited number of H1N1 vaccines. How do you allocate them? Do you (A) give them to specific groups, such as high-risk populations, or (B) sell them to the highest bidder and rebate the revenue lump-sum to everyone? If you choose (A), do you allow those individuals allocated the vaccine to sell their dose to someone else? Be sure to specify the economic environment as carefully as possible. And remember: Your goal is to maximize total utility.