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Ordering anomalies in choice experiments

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  • Day, Brett
  • Pinto Prades, Jose-Luis

Abstract

This paper investigates whether responses to choice experiments (CEs) are subject to ordering anomalies. While previous research has focussed on the possibility that such anomalies relate to position in the sequence of choice tasks, our research reveals that the particular order of tasks matters. Using a novel experimental design that allows us to test our hypotheses using simple nonparametric statistics, we observe ordering anomalies in CE data similar to those recorded in the dichotomous choice contingent valuation literature. Those ordering effects operate in both price and commodity dimensions and are observed to compound over a series of choice tasks. Our findings cast serious doubt on the current practice of asking each respondent to undertake several choice tasks in a CE while treating each response as an independent observation on that individual's preferences.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Environmental Economics and Management.

Volume (Year): 59 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (May)
Pages: 271-285

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jeeman:v:59:y:2010:i:3:p:271-285

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622870

Related research

Keywords: Choice experiments Ordering effects Dichotomous choice contingent valuation Nonparametric testing;

References

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  1. Herriges, Joseph A. & Shogren, Jason F., 1996. "Starting Point Bias in Dichotomous Choice Valuation with Follow-Up Questioning," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 30(1), pages 112-131, January.
  2. Bateman, Ian J. & Brouwer, Roy, 2006. "Consistency and construction in stated WTP for health risk reductions: A novel scope-sensitivity test," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 199-214, August.
  3. Tversky, Amos & Kahneman, Daniel, 1991. "Loss Aversion in Riskless Choice: A Reference-Dependent Model," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 106(4), pages 1039-61, November.
  4. Kevin J. Boyle & Richard C. Bishop & Michael P. Welsh, 1985. "Starting Point Bias in Contingent Valuation Bidding Games," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 62(2), pages 188-194.
  5. Trudy Ann Cameron & John Quiggin, 1992. "Estimation Using Contingent Valuation Data From a "Dichotomous Choice with Follow-Up" Questionnaire," UCLA Economics Working Papers 653, UCLA Department of Economics.
  6. David Aadland & Arthur Caplan & Owen Phillips, 2007. "A Bayesian examination of information and uncertainty in contingent valuation," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 35(2), pages 149-178, October.
  7. Powe, N. A. & Bateman, I. J., 2003. "Ordering effects in nested 'top-down' and 'bottom-up' contingent valuation designs," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 255-270, June.
  8. Richard Carson & Theodore Groves, 2007. "Incentive and informational properties of preference questions," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 37(1), pages 181-210, May.
  9. Ready Richard C. & Whitehead John C. & Blomquist Glenn C., 1995. "Contingent Valuation When Respondents Are Ambivalent," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 181-196, September.
  10. Wiktor L. Adamowicz, 2004. "What's it worth? An examination of historical trends and future directions in environmental valuation," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 48(3), pages 419-443, 09.
  11. Bateman, Ian J. & Cole, Matthew & Cooper, Philip & Georgiou, Stavros & Hadley, David & Poe, Gregory L., 2004. "On visible choice sets and scope sensitivity," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 71-93, January.
  12. Thomas P. Holmes & Kevin J. Boyle, 2005. "Dynamic Learning and Context-Dependence in Sequential, Attribute-Based, Stated-Preference Valuation Questions," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 81(1).
  13. DeShazo, J. R., 2002. "Designing Transactions without Framing Effects in Iterative Question Formats," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 43(3), pages 360-385, May.
  14. Donald M. McLeod & Olvar Bergland, 1999. "Willingness-to-Pay Estimates Using the Double-Bounded Dichotomous-Choice Contingent Valuation Format: A Test for Validity and Precision in a Bayesian Framework," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 75(1), pages 115-125.
  15. Flachaire, Emmanuel & Hollard, Guillaume, 2007. "Starting point bias and respondent uncertainty in dichotomous choice contingent valuation surveys," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 183-194, September.
  16. G. Cornelis van Kooten & Emina Krcmar & Erwin H. Bulte, 2001. "Preference Uncertainty in Non-Market Valuation: A Fuzzy Approach," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 83(3), pages 487-500.
  17. John C. Whitehead, 2002. "Incentive Incompatibility and Starting-Point Bias in Iterative Valuation Questions," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 78(2), pages 285-297.
  18. Brooks, Richard AU -, 1996. "EuroQol: the current state of play," Health Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 53-72, July.
  19. Jeremy Clark & Lana Friesen, 2006. "The Causes of Order Effects in Contingent Valuation Surveys: An Experimental Investigation," Working Papers in Economics 06/06, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
  20. Flores, Nicholas E. & Strong, Aaron, 2007. "Cost credibility and the stated preference analysis of public goods," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 195-205, September.
  21. Swait, Joffre & Adamowicz, Wiktor, 2001. " The Influence of Task Complexity on Consumer Choice: A Latent Class Model of Decision Strategy Switching," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 28(1), pages 135-48, June.
  22. Bateman, Ian J. & Langford, Ian H. & Jones, Andrew P. & Kerr, Geoffrey N., 2001. "Bound and path effects in double and triple bounded dichotomous choice contingent valuation," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(3), pages 191-213, July.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Ben McNair & David Hensher & Jeff Bennett, 2012. "Modelling Heterogeneity in Response Behaviour Towards a Sequence of Discrete Choice Questions: A Probabilistic Decision Process Model," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 51(4), pages 599-616, April.
  2. Carlsson, Fredrik & Kataria, Mitesh & Krupnick, Alan & Lampi, Elina & Löfgren, Åsa & Qin, Ping & Sterner, Thomas & Chung, Susie, 2010. "The Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth - A Multiple Country Test of an Oath Script," Working Papers in Economics 473, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  3. Daniel R. Petrolia & Matthew G. Interis & Joonghyun Hwang, 2014. "America’s Wetland? A National Survey of Willingness to Pay for Restoration of Louisiana’s Coastal Wetlands," Marine Resource Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(1), pages 17 - 37.
  4. Leong, Waiyan & Hensher, David A., 2012. "Embedding multiple heuristics into choice models: An exploratory analysis," Journal of choice modelling, Elsevier, vol. 5(3), pages 131-144.
  5. Bruno Lanz & Allan Provins, 2011. "Valuing Local Environmental Amenity with Discrete Choice Experiments: Spatial Scope Sensitivity and Heterogeneous Marginal Utility of Income," CEPE Working paper series 11-79, CEPE Center for Energy Policy and Economics, ETH Zurich.
  6. McNair, Ben J. & Bennett, Jeff & Hensher, David A., 2011. "A comparison of responses to single and repeated discrete choice questions," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 554-571, September.
  7. Hoyos, David, 2010. "The state of the art of environmental valuation with discrete choice experiments," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(8), pages 1595-1603, June.
  8. McNair, Ben J. & Hensher, David A. & Bennett, Jeff, 2010. "Modelling heterogeneity in response behaviour towards a sequence of discrete choice questions: a latent class approach," MPRA Paper 23427, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  9. Carlsson, Fredrik & Raun Mørkbak, Morten & Bøye Olsen, Søren, 2010. "The first time is the hardest: A test of ordering effects in choice experiments," Working Papers in Economics 470, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  10. Day, Brett & Bateman, Ian J. & Carson, Richard T. & Dupont, Diane & Louviere, Jordan J. & Morimoto, Sanae & Scarpa, Riccardo & Wang, Paul, 2012. "Ordering effects and choice set awareness in repeat-response stated preference studies," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 73-91.
  11. Mikołaj Czajkowski & Marek Giergiczny & William H. Greene, 2012. "Learning and Fatigue Effects Revisited. The Impact of Accounting for Unobservable Preference and Scale Heterogeneity on Perceived Ordering Effects in Multiple Choice Task Discrete Choice Experiments," Working Papers 2012-08, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
  12. Gabriela Scheufele & Jeff Bennett, 2012. "Response Strategies and Learning in Discrete Choice Experiments," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 52(3), pages 435-453, July.
  13. 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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