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Are Internet surveys an alternative to face-to-face interviews in contingent valuation?

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Author Info

  • Lindhjem, Henrik
  • Navrud, Ståle

Abstract

Internet is an increasingly popular data collection mode for stated preference research in environmental economics. However, little is known about how this survey mode may influence data quality and welfare estimates. As part of a national contingent valuation (CV) survey estimating willingness to pay (WTP) for biodiversity protection plans, we assign two groups of respondents either to an Internet or face-to-face (in-home) interview mode. Our design aims to better isolate measurement effects from sample composition effects by drawing both samples from the same sample frame. We find little evidence of social desirability bias in the interview setting or satisficing (shortcutting the response process) in the Internet survey. The share of "don't knows", zeros and protest responses to the WTP question with a payment card is very similar between modes and equality of mean WTP cannot be rejected. Results are fairly encouraging for the use of Internet in CV as stated preferences do not seem to be significantly different or biased compared to face-to-face interviews.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Ecological Economics.

Volume (Year): 70 (2011)
Issue (Month): 9 (July)
Pages: 1628-1637

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Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:70:y:2011:i:9:p:1628-1637

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolecon

Related research

Keywords: Internet Contingent valuation Interviews Survey mode Biodiversity;

References

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  1. Marta-Pedroso, Cristina & Freitas, Helena & Domingos, Tiago, 2007. "Testing for the survey mode effect on contingent valuation data quality: A case study of web based versus in-person interviews," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(3-4), pages 388-398, May.
  2. Nielsen, Jytte Seested, 2011. "Use of the Internet for willingness-to-pay surveys: A comparison of face-to-face and web-based interviews," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 119-129, January.
  3. Li, Hui & Jenkins-Smith, Hank C. & Silva, Carol L. & Berrens, Robert P. & Herron, Kerry G., 2009. "Public support for reducing US reliance on fossil fuels: Investigating household willingness-to-pay for energy research and development," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(3), pages 731-742, January.
  4. Mariah Ehmke & Jayson Lusk & John List, 2008. "Is hypothetical bias a universal phenomenon? A multinational investigation," Artefactual Field Experiments 00041, The Field Experiments Website.
  5. Lindhjem, Henrik, 2006. "20 years of stated preference valuation of non-timber benefits from Fennoscandian forests: A meta-analysis," MPRA Paper 11467, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  6. van der Heide, C. Martijn & van den Bergh, Jeroen C.J.M. & van Ierland, Ekko C. & Nunes, Paulo A.L.D., 2008. "Economic valuation of habitat defragmentation: A study of the Veluwe, the Netherlands," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 205-216, September.
  7. Lindhjem, Henrik & Navrud, St�le, 2011. "Using Internet in Stated Preference Surveys: A Review and Comparison of Survey Modes," International Review of Environmental and Resource Economics, now publishers, vol. 5(4), pages 309-351, September.
  8. Søren Olsen, 2009. "Choosing Between Internet and Mail Survey Modes for Choice Experiment Surveys Considering Non-Market Goods," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 44(4), pages 591-610, December.
  9. Judith Covey & Angela Robinson & Michael Jones-Lee & Graham Loomes, 2010. "Responsibility, scale and the valuation of rail safety," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 40(1), pages 85-108, February.
  10. John A. List & Robert P. Berrens & Alok K. Bohara & Joe Kerkvliet, 2004. "Examining the Role of Social Isolation on Stated Preferences," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 741-752, June.
  11. Annette J‰ckle & Caroline Roberts & Peter Lynn, 2010. "Assessing the Effect of Data Collection Mode on Measurement," International Statistical Review, International Statistical Institute, vol. 78(1), pages 3-20, 04.
  12. Cameron, Trudy Ann & Huppert, Daniel D., 1989. "OLS versus ML estimation of non-market resource values with payment card interval data," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(3), pages 230-246, November.
  13. MacMillan, Douglas & Hanley, Nick & Lienhoop, Nele, 2006. "Contingent valuation: Environmental polling or preference engine?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 299-307, November.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Paula Simões & Luís Cruz & Eduardo Barata, 2012. "Non-market Recreational Value of a National Forest: Survey Design and Results," GEMF Working Papers 2012-09, GEMF - Faculdade de Economia, Universidade de Coimbra.
  2. 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.
  3. Börger, Tobias, 2013. "Keeping up appearances: Motivations for socially desirable responding in contingent valuation interviews," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 87(C), pages 155-165.
  4. Elena Claire Ricci & Valentina Bosetti & Erin Baker, 2014. "From Expert Elicitations to Integrated Assessment: Future Prospects of Carbon Capture Technologies," Working Papers 2014.44, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  5. Navrud, Stale & Strand, Jon, 2013. "Valuing global public goods : a European Delphi stated preference survey of population willingness to pay for Amazon rainforest preservation," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6637, The World Bank.
  6. Erin Baker & Valentina Bosetti & Karen E. Jenni & Elena Claire Ricci, 2014. "Facing the Experts: Survey Mode and Expert Elicitation," Working Papers 2014.01, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  7. 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.

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