Open Access Journal

ISSN: 2183-2463

Editorial | Open Access

Considering Future Generations in Democratic Governance

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Abstract:  Intergenerational issues encompass various future concerns ranging from climate change to government debt, which can potentially harm the well-being of future generations. Scholars have discussed intergenerational equity and justice, and efforts to incorporate future generations in decision-making in society have been growing, including establishing future-regarding institutions. Nevertheless, democratic governance often prioritizes short-term gains over long-term benefits. This thematic issue aims to present the current state of progress and academic discourse on incorporating considerations for future generations into current decision-making. The issue comprises 10 articles with a varied focus, including on young people and those who are yet to be born. Challenges such as misrepresentation and negligence in democratic deliberation are explored, along with legal obligations grounded in human rights. Proxies for future generations in political decision-making are examined, revealing limitations in enforcing their interests. The impact of political short-termism on government responses is discussed, and the role of narratives in moral philosophy is explored. Diverse cases, including climate litigation in the German Federal Constitutional Court, highlight the complexity of addressing future generations. These articles explore and identify challenges in incorporating consideration of future generations, which could be used to catalyze studies on actions that will be taken in the future.

Keywords:  future generations; future‐regarding institutions; governance; intergenerational equity; intergenerational justice; Pact for the Future; short‐termism



© Tomohiro Tasaki, Yasuko Kameyama. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (, which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.