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Endowment effect theory, prediction bias and publicly provided goods – an experimental study

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  • Bischoff, Ivo

Abstract

Many studies report on a systematic disparity between the willingness to pay for a certain good (WTP) and the willingness to accept retribution payments in exchange for giving up this good (WTA). Thaler (1980) employs prospect theory to explain this disparity. The literature contains two different interpretations of his endowment effect theory. Accordingly, the disparity is caused either by the disutility from parting with one's endowment and/or by an extra utility from ownership which is not anticipated by individuals who are not endowed with the good. So far, the empirical evidence on the applicability of endowment effect theory is limited to private goods. The current paper reports on an experiment which finds a significant ownership utility effect for a publicly provided good. This result indicates that prospect theory applies to publicly provided goods even though consumers do not have exclusive property rights. --

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Justus Liebig University Giessen, Fachbereich Wirtschaftswissenschaften in its series Finanzwissenschaftliche Arbeitspapiere with number 75.

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Date of creation: 2006
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:jlufwa:75

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Keywords: endowment effect; loss aversion; publicly provided goods; experiment;

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  1. Bischoff, Ivo, 2006. "Endowment effect theory, prediction bias and publicly provided goods – an experimental study," Finanzwissenschaftliche Arbeitspapiere 75, Justus Liebig University Giessen, Fachbereich Wirtschaftswissenschaften.
  2. Jack L. Knetsch, 1994. "Environmental Valuation: Some Problems of Wrong Questions and Misleading Answers," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 3(4), pages 351-368, November.
  3. Davis, Harry L & Hoch, Stephen J & Ragsdale, E K Easton, 1986. " An Anchoring and Adjustment Model of Spousal Predictions," Journal of Consumer Research, University of Chicago Press, vol. 13(1), pages 25-37, June.
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  6. Franciosi, Robert & Kujal, Praveen & Michelitsch, Roland & Smith, Vernon & Deng, Gang, 1996. "Experimental tests of the endowment effect," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 213-226, August.
  7. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L., 1992. "Valuing public goods: The purchase of moral satisfaction," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 57-70, January.
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  13. Biel, Anders & Johansson-Stenman, Olof & Nilsson, Andreas, 2006. "Emotions, Morality and Public Goods: The WTA-WTP Disparity Revisited," Working Papers in Economics 193, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  14. Nape, Steven & Frykblom, Peter & Harrison, Glenn W. & Lesley, James C., 2003. "Hypothetical bias and willingness to accept," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(3), pages 423-430, March.
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  16. Van Boven, Leaf & Loewenstein, George & Dunning, David, 2003. "Mispredicting the endowment effect:: Underestimation of owners' selling prices by buyer's agents," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 351-365, July.
  17. Brown, Thomas C., 2005. "Loss aversion without the endowment effect, and other explanations for the WTA-WTP disparity," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 367-379, July.
  18. Frey, Bruno S & Eichenberger, Reiner, 1991. " Anomalies in Political Economy," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 68(1-3), pages 71-89, January.
  19. Loewenstein, George & Adler, Daniel, 1995. "A Bias in the Prediction of Tastes," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 105(431), pages 929-37, July.
  20. Hanemann, W Michael, 1991. "Willingness to Pay and Willingness to Accept: How Much Can They Differ?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(3), pages 635-47, June.
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  22. Nunes, Paulo A. L. D. & Schokkaert, Erik, 2003. "Identifying the warm glow effect in contingent valuation," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(2), pages 231-245, March.
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Cited by:
  1. J. DeShazo & Trudy Cameron & Manrique Saenz, 2009. "The Effect of Consumers’ Real-World Choice Sets on Inferences from Stated Preference Surveys," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 42(3), pages 319-343, March.
  2. Bischoff, Ivo, 2006. "Endowment effect theory, prediction bias and publicly provided goods – an experimental study," Finanzwissenschaftliche Arbeitspapiere 75, Justus Liebig University Giessen, Fachbereich Wirtschaftswissenschaften.

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