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Value of Life and Measuring the Benefits of Landmine Clearance in Cambodia

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  • Cameron, Michael P.
  • Gibson, John
  • Helmers, Kent
  • Lim, Steven
  • Scrimgeour, Frank G.
  • Tressler, John
  • Vaddanak, Kien

Abstract

This paper presents estimates of the benefits of clearing landmines in two provinces in rural Cambodia using the contingent-valuation (CV) method. The data came from a survey where we asked respondents referendum-type questions that elicit their willingness to pay for landmine clearance. The survey also provides estimates of the injury risk-death risk trade-off and the implicit value of statistical injury. These estimates suggest that the value of lives and injuries saved from mine clearing is likely to be at least an order of magnitude greater than those used in existing studies of mine clearing. We show that the value of lives and injuries saved is likely to dominate benefit assessments when VSL estimates are used. Estimates previously obtained for rural Thailand are contrasted with the results for Cambodia, and the determinants of the VSL investigated using econometric techniques. While Harris (2000) found a significantly negative net present value of landmine clearance in Cambodia we show that when using VSL estimates the net present value is less negative, and the value of lives and injuries saved dominates the benefits

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File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/137799
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society in its series 2005 Conference (49th), February 9-11, 2005, Coff's Harbour, Australia with number 137799.

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Date of creation: 2005
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Handle: RePEc:ags:aare05:137799

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Keywords: benefit-cost analysis; contingent valuation; landmines; value of statistical life; Risk and Uncertainty; J17; J28; 022; Q28;

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  1. W. Kip Viscusi & Joseph E. Aldy, 2003. "The Value of a Statistical Life: A Critical Review of Market Estimates throughout the World," NBER Working Papers 9487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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  3. Shanmugam, K R, 2001. " Self Selection Bias in the Estimates of Compensating Differentials for Job Risks in India," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 263-75, May.
  4. Viscusi, W Kip, 2000. "Risk Equity," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 29(2), pages 843-71, June.
  5. Viscusi, W Kip & Evans, William N, 1990. "Utility Functions That Depend on Health Status: Estimates and Economic Implications," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 80(3), pages 353-74, June.
  6. Sherwin Rosen, . "The Value of Changes in Life Expectancy," University of Chicago - Population Research Center 87-14, Chicago - Population Research Center.
  7. Kip Viscusi, W. & Magat, Wesley A. & Huber, Joel, 1991. "Pricing environmental health risks: survey assessments of risk-risk and risk-dollar trade-offs for chronic bronchitis," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 21(1), pages 32-51, July.
  8. Beattie, Jane, et al, 1998. "On the Contingent Valuation of Safety and the Safety of Contingent Valuation: Part 1--Caveat Investigator," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 5-25, October.
  9. K. Shanmugam, 2000. "Valuations of Life and Injury Risks," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 16(4), pages 379-389, August.
  10. Viscusi, W Kip, 1993. "The Value of Risks to Life and Health," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 31(4), pages 1912-46, December.
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  12. Jason F. Shogren & Tommy Stamland, 2002. "Skill and the Value of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 110(5), pages 1168-1197, October.
  13. Gareth Elliot & Geoff Harris, 2001. "A cost-benefit analysis of landmine clearance in Mozambique," Development Southern Africa, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 18(5), pages 625-633.
  14. Geoff Harris, 2000. "The economics of landmine clearance: case study of Cambodia," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 12(2), pages 219-225.
  15. Liu, Jin-Tan & Hammitt, James K. & Liu, Jin-Long, 1997. "Estimated hedonic wage function and value of life in a developing country," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 353-358, December.
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