Risk-Taking Behavior in the Wake of Natural Disasters
AbstractWe study whether natural disasters affect risk-taking behavior exploiting geographic variation in exposure to natural disasters. We conduct standard risk games (using real money) with randomly selected individuals in Indonesia and find that individuals who recently suffered a flood or earthquake exhibit more risk aversion than individuals living in otherwise like villages. The impact persists for several years, particularly if the disaster was severe. Some, but not all, of this effect is due to income losses. While we cannot rule out fundamental changes in risk preferences, data on subjective beliefs of the probability of a disaster occurring and the expected severity of such a disaster suggest that changes in perceptions of background risk are driving the more risk-averse behavior we observe. We show that access to insurance can partly offset this effect. Finally, we relate the observed experimental behavior to the propensity of respondents to take risks in their daily lives and show that an increase in risk-aversion has important implications for economic development.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6756.
Length: 51 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2012
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page: http://www.iza.org
Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Other versions of this item:
- Lisa Cameron & Manisha Shah, 2013. "Risk-Taking Behavior in the Wake of Natural Disasters," NBER Working Papers 19534, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters
- O12 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Microeconomic Analyses of Economic Development
- D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2012-09-30 (All new papers)
- NEP-EXP-2012-09-30 (Experimental Economics)
- NEP-SEA-2012-09-30 (South East Asia)
- NEP-UPT-2012-09-30 (Utility Models & Prospect Theory)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Ulrike Malmendier & Stefan Nagel, 2011.
"Depression Babies: Do Macroeconomic Experiences Affect Risk Taking?,"
The Quarterly Journal of Economics,
Oxford University Press, vol. 126(1), pages 373-416.
- Ulrike Malmendier & Stefan Nagel, 2009. "Depression Babies: Do Macroeconomic Experiences Affect Risk-Taking?," NBER Working Papers 14813, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Eckel, Catherine C. & El-Gamal, Mahmoud A. & Wilson, Rick K., 2009. "Risk loving after the storm: A Bayesian-Network study of Hurricane Katrina evacuees," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 69(2), pages 110-124, February.
- EECKHOUDT, Louis & Christian GOLLIER & Harris SCHLESINGER, 1994.
"Changes in Background Risk and Risk Taking Behavior,"
005, Risk and Insurance Archive.
- Eeckhoudt, Louis & Gollier, Christian & Schlesinger, Harris, 1996. "Changes in Background Risk and Risk-Taking Behavior," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(3), pages 683-89, May.
- repec:pri:indrel:1064 is not listed on IDEAS
- Noy, Ilan, 2009.
"The macroeconomic consequences of disasters,"
Journal of Development Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 88(2), pages 221-231, March.
- Yamauchi, Futoshi & Yohannes, Yisehac & Quisumbing, Agnes R., 2009.
"Natural disasters, self-Insurance, and human capital investment: Evidence from Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Malawi,"
IFPRI discussion papers
881, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Yamauchi, Futoshi & Yohannes, Yisehac & Quisumbing, Agnes, 2009. "Natural disasters, self-insurance and human capital investment : evidence from Bangladesh, Ethiopia and Malawi," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4910, The World Bank.
- Halliday, Timothy, 2006.
"Migration, Risk, and Liquidity Constraints in El Salvador,"
Economic Development and Cultural Change,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 54(4), pages 893-925, July.
- Timothy Halliday, 2005. "Migration, Risk and Liquidity Constraints in El Salvador," Working Papers 200511, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Department of Economics, revised 28 Mar 2006.
- Finlay, Jocelyn E., 2009. "Fertility response to natural disasters : the case of three high mortality earthquakes," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4883, The World Bank.
- Andrabi, Tahir & Das, Jishnu, 2010. "In aid we trust : hearts and minds and the Pakistan earthquake of 2005," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5440, The World Bank.
- Hans Binswanger, 1980. "Attitudes toward risk: Experimental measurement in rural india," Artefactual Field Experiments 00009, The Field Experiments Website.
- Baez, Javier E. & de la Fuente, Alejandro & Santos, Indhira, 2010. "Do Natural Disasters Affect Human Capital? An Assessment Based on Existing Empirical Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 5164, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Alain Cohn & Jan Engelmann & Ernst Fehr & Michel Maréchal, 2013. "Evidence for countercyclical risk aversion: an experiment with financial professionals," UBSCENTER - Working Papers 004, UBS International Center of Economics in Society - Department of Economics - University of Zurich.
- Lionel Page & David A. Savage & Benno Torgler, 2012.
"Variation in Risk Seeking Behavior in a Natural Experiment on Large Losses Induced by a Natural Disaster,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
3878, CESifo Group Munich.
- Lionel Page & David Savage & Benno Torgler, 2012. "Variation in Risk Seeking Behavior in a Natural Experiment on Large Losses Induced by a Natural Disaster," NCER Working Paper Series 83, National Centre for Econometric Research, revised 09 Jul 2012.
- Lionel Page & David Savage & Benno Torgler, 2012. "Variation in risk seeking behavior in a natural experiment on large losses induced by a natural disaster," CREMA Working Paper Series 2012-07, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
- Lionel Page & David Savage & Benno Torgler, 2012. "Variation in Risk Seeking Behavior in a Natural Experiment on Large Losses Induced by a Natural Disaster," Working Papers 2012.54, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
- Leonardo Becchetti & Stefano Castriota & Pierluigi Conzo, 2012.
"Calamity, Aid and Indirect Reciprocity: the Long Run Impact of Tsunami on Altruism,"
CEIS Research Paper
239, Tor Vergata University, CEIS, revised 06 Jul 2012.
- Leonardo Becchetti & Stefano Castriota & Pierluigi Conzo, 2012. "Calamity, Aid and Indirect Reciprocity: the Long Run Impact of Tsunami on Altruism," CSEF Working Papers 316, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
- Agathe Rouaix & Charles Figuières & Marc Willinger, 2013.
"The trade-off between welfare and equality in a public good experiment,"
13-03, LAMETA, Universtiy of Montpellier, revised Feb 2013.
- Mohamed Ali Bchir & Marc Willinger, 2013. "The trade-off between welfare and equality in a public good experiment," Working Papers 13-04, LAMETA, Universtiy of Montpellier, revised Mar 2013.
- Marc Willinger & Mohamed Ali Bchir & Carine Heitz, 2013. "Risk and time preferences under the threat of background risk: a case-study of lahars risk in central Java," Working Papers 13-08, LAMETA, Universtiy of Montpellier, revised May 2013.
- Trautmann, S.T. & Kuilen, G. van de, 2011. "Belief Elicitation: A Horse Race among Truth Serums," Discussion Paper 2011-117, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
- Vieider, Ferdinand M. & Chmura, Thorsten & Martinsson, Peter, 2012. "Risk attitudes, development, and growth: Macroeconomic evidence from experiments in 30 countries," Discussion Papers, WZB Junior Research Group Risk and Development SP II 2012-401, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
- Anh Duc Dang, 2012. "On the Sources of Risk Preferences in Rural Vietnam," ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics 2012-593, Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics.
- Lionel Page & David A. Savage & Benno Torgler, 2013. "Variation in risk seeking behavior following large losses: A natural experiment," QuBE Working Papers 007, QUT Business School.
- Sanjaya, Muhammad Ryan, 2013. "On the source of risk aversion in Indonesia using micro data 2007," Economics Discussion Papers 2013-33, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
- Anh Duc Dang, 2012. "Cooperation makes beliefs: Weather variation and sources of social trust in Vietnam," ANU Working Papers in Economics and Econometrics 2012-596, Australian National University, College of Business and Economics, School of Economics.
- Alessandro Bucciol & Luca Zarri, 2013. "Financial Risk Aversion and Personal Life History," Working Papers 05/2013, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
- repec:ner:dauphi:urn:hdl:123456789/6637 is not listed on IDEAS
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Fallak).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.