Document de travail

Catastrophes, delays, and learning

Matti Liski et François Salanié


How to plan for catastrophes that may be under way? In a simple but general model of experimentation, a decision-maker chooses a flow variable contributing to a stock that may trigger a catastrophe at each untried level. Once triggered, the catastrophe itself occurs only after a stochastic delay. Consequently, the rhythm of past experimentations determines the arrival of information. This has strong implications for policies in situations where the planner inherits a history of experiments, like climate change and pandemic crisis. The structure encompasses canonical approaches in the literature.


catastrophes, experimentation, delays;

Codes JEL

  • C61: Optimization Techniques • Programming Models • Dynamic Analysis
  • D81: Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
  • Q54: Climate • Natural Disasters • Global Warming


Matti Liski et François Salanié, « Catastrophes, delays, and learning », TSE Working Paper, n° 20-1148, septembre 2020.

Voir aussi

Publié dans

TSE Working Paper, n° 20-1148, septembre 2020