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Complexity in choice experiments: choice of the status quo alternative and implications for welfare measurement

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  • Peter Boxall
  • W. L. (Vic) Adamowicz
  • Amanda Moon

Abstract

We examine the propensity of respondents to choose the status quo (SQ) or current situation alternative as a function of complexity in two separate state-of-the-world choice experiments. Complexity in each choice set was characterized as the number of single and multiple changes in levels of attributes from the current situation and the order of the choice task in the sequence of multiple tasks provided to respondents. We show that increasing complexity leads to increased choice of the SQ and that a respondent's age and level of education also influenced this choice. We outline the effects of the alternate approaches for incorporating the SQ into welfare measurement. These findings have implications for the design of stated preference experiments, examining passive use values and for empirical analysis leading to welfare measurement. Copyright 2009 The Authors. Journal compilation 2009 Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society Inc. and Blackwell Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1111/j.1467-8489.2009.00469.x
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society in its journal Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics.

Volume (Year): 53 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (October)
Pages: 503-519

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Handle: RePEc:bla:ajarec:v:53:y:2009:i:4:p:503-519

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Cited by:
  1. Jill Windle & John Rolfe, 2010. "Assessing community values for reducing agricultural emissions to improve water quality and protect coral health in the Great Barrier Reef," Environmental Economics Research Hub Research Reports 1084, Environmental Economics Research Hub, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University.
  2. Rogers, Abbie A., 2012. "Conservation values and management preferences for the Ningaloo Marine Park: a discrete choice experiment," 2012 Conference (56th), February 7-10, 2012, Freemantle, Australia 124431, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
  3. Ole Bonnichsen & Jacob Ladenburg, 2010. "Reducing Status Quo Bias in Choice Experiments – An Application of a Protest Reduction Entreaty," IFRO Working Paper 2010/7, University of Copenhagen, Department of Food and Resource Economics.
  4. Bruno Lanz & Allan Provins, 2012. "Do status quo choices reflect preferences? Evidence from a discrete choice experiment in the context of water utilities' investment planning," CEPE Working paper series 12-87, CEPE Center for Energy Policy and Economics, ETH Zurich.
  5. Cash, Sean B. & Slade, Peter & Cranfield, John, 2013. "The Chicken Wears No Skin: Ordering E ects in Elicitation of Willingness to Pay for Multiple Credence Attributes in Ethical and Novel Food Products," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 150364, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  6. Vanja WESTERBERG & Jette Bredahl JACOBSEN & Robert LIFRAN, 2012. "The case for offshore wind farms, artificial reefs and sustainable tourism in the French Mediterranean," Working Papers 12-11, LAMETA, Universtiy of Montpellier, revised Apr 2012.
  7. Hu, Wuyang, 2006. "Effects of Endogenous Task Complexity and the Endowed Bundle on Stated Choice," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21437, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  8. Lindhjem, Henrik & Navrud, Stale, 2011. "Using Internet in Stated Preference Surveys: A Review and Comparison of Survey Modes," MPRA Paper 35633, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Vanja WESTERBERG & Jette BREDAHL JACOBSEN & Robert LIFRAN, 2012. "The Multi-faceted Nature of Preferences for Offshore Wind Farm Siting," Working Papers 12-22, LAMETA, Universtiy of Montpellier, revised Jul 2012.
  10. Windle, Jill & Rolfe, John, 2010. "Assessing community values for reducing agricultural emissions to improve water quality and protect coral health in the Great Barrier Reef," Research Reports 107583, Australian National University, Environmental Economics Research Hub.
  11. Shahnawaz Karim & Minsoo Lee & Christopher Gan, 2011. "Price Effects of Monetary Policy: The Case of a Small Open Economy of New Zealand," Economic Analysis and Policy (EAP), Queensland University of Technology (QUT), School of Economics and Finance, vol. 41(3), pages 253-272, December.
  12. Dale Whittington & Vic Adamowicz, 2010. "The Use of Hypothetical Baselines in Stated Preference Surveys," EEPSEA Special and Technical Paper sp201009s1, Economy and Environment Program for Southeast Asia (EEPSEA), revised Sep 2010.
  13. Dan Marsh & Lena Mkwara & Riccardo Scarpa, 2011. "Do Respondents’ Perceptions of the Status Quo Matter in Non-Market Valuation with Choice Experiments? An Application to New Zealand Freshwater Streams," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 3(9), pages 1593-1615, September.
  14. Rhona Barr & Susana Mourato, 2012. "Investigating fishers’ preferences for the design of marine Payments for Environmental Services schemes," Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment Working Papers 101, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment.

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