Truth in Consequentiality: Theory and Field Evidence on Discrete Choice Experiments
This paper explores methodological issues surrounding the use of discrete choice experiments to elicit values for public goods. We develop an explicit game theoretic model of individual decisions, providing conditions under which surveys with a single binary choice question, or sequence of binary choice questions, are incentive-compatible. We complement the theory with a framed field experiment, with treatments that span the spectrum from incentive-compatible, financially binding decisions to decisions with no direct financial consequences. The results suggest truthful preference revelation is possible, provided that participants view their decisions as having more than a weak chance of influencing policy. (JEL C83, C93, H41, Q23)
Volume (Year): 4 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 (November)
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