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Robustness to Parametric Assumptions in Missing Data Models

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  • Bryan S. Graham
  • Keisuke Hirano

Abstract

We consider estimation of population averages when data are missing at random. If some cells contain few observations, there can be substantial gains from imposing parametric restrictions on the cell means, but there is also a danger of misspecification. We develop a simple empirical Bayes estimator, which combines parametric and unadjusted estimates of cell means in a data-driven way. We also consider ways to use knowledge of the form of the propensity score to increase robustness. We develop an empirical Bayes extension of a double robust estimator. In a small simulation study, the empirical Bayes estimators perform well. They are similar to fully nonparametric methods and robust to misspecification when cells are moderate to large in size, and when cells are small they maintain the benefits of parametric methods and can have lower sampling variance.

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File URL: http://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.101.3.538
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 101 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 538-43

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Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:101:y:2011:i:3:p:538-43

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  1. Weihua Cao & Anastasios A. Tsiatis & Marie Davidian, 2009. "Improving efficiency and robustness of the doubly robust estimator for a population mean with incomplete data," Biometrika, Biometrika Trust, vol. 96(3), pages 723-734.
  2. Guido M. Imbens & Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 2008. "Recent Developments in the Econometrics of Program Evaluation," NBER Working Papers 14251, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Jeffrey M. Wooldridge, 2004. "Inverse probability weighted estimation for general missing data problems," CeMMAP working papers CWP05/04, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  4. Xiaohong Chen & Han Hong & Alessandro Tarozzi, 2008. "Semiparametric Efficiency in GMM Models of Nonclassical Measurement Errors, Missing Data and Treatment Effects," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1644, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
  5. David S. Lee & David Card, 2006. "Regression Discontinuity Inference with Specification Error," NBER Technical Working Papers 0322, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Joshua Angrist & Jinyong Hahn, 2004. "When to Control for Covariates? Panel Asymptotics for Estimates of Treatment Effects," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 86(1), pages 58-72, February.
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