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The Value of Statistical Life in Road Safety: A Meta-Analysis

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Author Info

  • Arianne de Blaeij

    ()

  • Raymond J.G.M. Florax
  • Piet Rietveld

    ()

  • Erik T. Verhoef

    ()
    (Vrije Universiteit)

Abstract

Accident costs are an important component of the external costs of traffic, a substantial part of whichis related to fatal accidents. The evaluation of fatal accident costs crucially depends on theavailability of an estimate for the economic value of a statistical life. The aim of the currentpaper is to present an overview of such estimates contained in the empirical literature on theeconomic valuation of statistical life in road safety. The technique of meta-analysis is used todetermine which variables are most appropriate to explain the variance of the value of statisticallife (VOSL) estimates that have been reported in the literature. The analysis shows, among otherthings, that the magnitude of estimates of the VOSL depends on the research method, as there is asignificant difference between stated and revealed preference studies. It also shows that VOSLestimates cannot simply be averaged over studies, as the magnitude of a VOSL estimate is directlyrelated to the initial level of risk to be caught up in a fatal traffic accident as well as the riskdecline implied by the research set-up.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Tinbergen Institute in its series Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers with number 00-089/3.

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Date of creation: 16 Nov 2000
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Handle: RePEc:dgr:uvatin:20000089

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Web page: http://www.tinbergen.nl

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Keywords: transport safety; value of statistical life; meta-analysis;

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References

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  1. Johannesson, Magnus & Johansson, Per-Olov & O'Conor, Richard M, 1996. "The Value of Private Safety versus the Value of Public Safety," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 13(3), pages 263-75, November.
  2. Nijkamp, Peter & Rietveld, Piet & Spierdijk, Laura, 1999. "Classification techniques in quantitative comparative research : a meta-comparison," Serie Research Memoranda, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics 0056, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
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  7. Card, David & Krueger, Alan B, 1995. "Time-Series Minimum-Wage Studies: A Meta-analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 85(2), pages 238-43, May.
  8. Dreyfus, Mark K & Viscusi, W Kip, 1995. "Rates of Time Preference and Consumer Valuations of Automobile Safety and Fuel Efficiency," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 38(1), pages 79-105, April.
  9. Maier, G. & Gerking, S.D. & Weiss, P., 1989. "The economics of traffic accidents on Austrian roads: Risk lovers or policy deficit?," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-4742827, Tilburg University.
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  11. Smith, V Kerry & Desvousges, William H, 1987. "An Empirical Analysis of the Economic Value of Risk Changes," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, University of Chicago Press, vol. 95(1), pages 89-114, February.
  12. Lanoie, Paul & Pedro, Carmen & Latour, Robert, 1995. "The Value of a Statistical Life: A Comparison of Two Approaches," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 10(3), pages 235-57, May.
  13. Jondrow, James & Bowes, Marianne & Levy, Robert, 1983. "The Optimal Speed Limit," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, Western Economic Association International, vol. 21(3), pages 325-36, July.
  14. 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.
  15. Jones-Lee, M W & Loomes, G, 1995. "Scale and Context Effects in the Valuation of Transport Safety," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 183-203, December.
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