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What Experimental Protocol Influence Disparities Between Actual and Hypothetical Stated Values?

  • John List
  • Craig Gallet

    ()

Preferences elicited in hypothetical settings have recently come underscrutiny, causing estimates from the contingent valuation method to bechallenged due to perceived ``hypothetical bias.'' Given that the receivedliterature derives value estimates using heterogeneous experimentaltechniques, understanding the effects of important design parameters onthe magnitude of hypothetical bias is invaluable. In this paper, we addressthis issue statistically by using a meta-analysis to examine data from 29experimental studies. Our empirical findings suggest that on averagesubjects overstate their preferences by a factor of about 3 in hypotheticalsettings, and that the degree of over-revelation is influenced by thedistinction between willingness-to-pay and willingness-to-accept, publicversus private goods, and several elicitation methods. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

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Article provided by European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists in its journal Environmental and Resource Economics.

Volume (Year): 20 (2001)
Issue (Month): 3 (November)
Pages: 241-254

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Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:20:y:2001:i:3:p:241-254
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100263

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  1. John List, 2001. "Do explicit warnings eliminate the hypothetical bias in elicitation procedures? Evidence from field auctions for sportscards," Framed Field Experiments 00163, The Field Experiments Website.
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  3. John A. Fox & Jason F. Shogren & Dermot J. Hayes & James B. Kliebenstein, 1998. "CVM-X: Calibrating Contingent Values with Experimental Auction Markets," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(3), pages 455-465.
  4. Jason Shogren & John List, 2002. "Calibration of willingness-to-accept," Framed Field Experiments 00182, The Field Experiments Website.
  5. Grether, David M. & Plott, Charles R., . "Economic Theory of Choice and the Preference Reversal Phenomenon," Working Papers 152, California Institute of Technology, Division of the Humanities and Social Sciences.
  6. Seip, K. & Strand, J., 1990. "Willingness To Pay For Environmental Goods In Norway: A Contingent Valuation Study With Real Payment," Memorandum 12/1990, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
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  8. Balistreri, Edward J. & Poe, Gregory L. & McClelland, Gary H. & Schulze, William D., 1996. "Can Hypothetical Questions Reveal True Values? A Laboratory Comparison of Dichotomous Choice and Open-Ended Contingent Values with Auction Values," Working Papers 127865, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
  9. Brookshire, David S & Coursey, Don L, 1987. "Measuring the Value of a Public Good: An Empirical Comparison of Elicitation Procedures," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 77(4), pages 554-66, September.
  10. List, John A. & Shogren, Jason F., 1998. "Calibration of the difference between actual and hypothetical valuations in a field experiment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 193-205, October.
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  12. Spencer, Michael A. & Swallow, Stephen K. & Miller, Christopher J., 1998. "Valuing Water Quality Monitoring: A Contingent Valuation Experiment Involving Hypothetical And Real Payments," Agricultural and Resource Economics Review, Northeastern Agricultural and Resource Economics Association, vol. 27(1), April.
  13. John Loomis & Thomas Brown & Beatrice Lucero & George Peterson, 1997. "Evaluating the Validity of the Dichotomous Choice Question Format in Contingent Valuation," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 10(2), pages 109-123, September.
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  17. John List & Richard Hofler, 2004. "Valuation on the frontier: Calibrating actual and hypothetical statements of value," Framed Field Experiments 00159, The Field Experiments Website.
  18. John Loomis & Thomas Brown & Beatrice Lucero & George Peterson, 1996. "Improving Validity Experiments of Contingent Valuation Methods: Results of Efforts to Reduce the Disparity of Hypothetical and Actual Willingness to Pay," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 72(4), pages 450-461.
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  22. Sinden, Jack A., 1988. "Empirical Tests Of Hypothetical Bias In Consumers' Surplus Surveys," Australian Journal of Agricultural Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 32(02-03).
  23. Peter Frykblom, 2000. "Willingness to pay and the choice of question format: experimental results," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 7(10), pages 665-667.
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  25. Bohm, Peter, 1972. "Estimating demand for public goods: An experiment," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 3(2), pages 111-130.
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  27. Cummings, Ronald G, et al, 1997. "Are Hypothetical Referenda Incentive Compatible?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 105(3), pages 609-21, June.
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  30. Thomas C. Brown & Patricia A. Champ & Richard C. Bishop & Daniel W. McCollum, 1996. "Which Response Format Reveals the Truth about Donations to a Public Good?," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 72(2), pages 152-166.
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