Prevention and Precaution

  • Christophe Courbage
  • Béatrice Rey
  • Nicolas Treich


This chapter surveys the economic literature on prevention and precaution. Prevention refers as either a self-protection activity—i.e. a reduction in the probability of a loss—or a self-insurance activity—i.e. a reduction of the loss. Precaution is defined as a prudent and temporary activity when the risk is imperfectly known. We first present results on prevention, including the effect of risk preferences, wealth and background risks. Second, we discuss how the concept of precaution is strongly linked to the effect of arrival of information over time in sequential models as well as to situations in which there is ambiguity over probability distributions.


Utility Function Risk Aversion Market Insurance Loss Probability Ambiguity Aversion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



Nicolas Treich acknowledges financial support from the chair “Finance Durable et Investissement Responsable” (FDIR).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business media, New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christophe Courbage
    • 1
  • Béatrice Rey
    • 2
  • Nicolas Treich
    • 3
  1. 1.The Geneva AssociationGenevaSwitzerland
  2. 2.LSAF, ISFAUniversité Lyon 1, Université de LyonLyonFrance
  3. 3.LERNA-INRA, Toulouse School of EconomicsToulouseFrance

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