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Testing hypothetical bias with a real choice experiment using respondents' own money


  • Riccarda Moser
  • Roberta Raffaelli
  • Sandra Notaro


The investigation of hypothetical bias in choice experiments (CEs) has typically been conducted in the laboratory with only minimal field experiments. Moreover, it is common practice to provide an initial endowment (money or coupons) to respondents. In this research, we employed a between-subject CE in a supermarket with three different treatments (i.e. hypothetical, hypothetical with cheap talk script and real). With the ‘real’ treatment, we required respondents to use their own money when making a payment. The proposed incentive-compatible mechanism mimics as close as possible the everyday purchasing situation. Results confirm the presence of hypothetical bias and the mixed effectiveness of a cheap talk script. , Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Riccarda Moser & Roberta Raffaelli & Sandra Notaro, 2014. "Testing hypothetical bias with a real choice experiment using respondents' own money," European Review of Agricultural Economics, Foundation for the European Review of Agricultural Economics, vol. 41(1), pages 25-46, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:erevae:v:41:y:2014:i:1:p:25-46

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    1. Atozou, Baoubadi & Tamini, Lota D. & Bergeronm, Stephane & Doyon, Maurice, 2020. "Factors Explaining the Hypothetical Bias: How to Improve Models for Meta-Analyses," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 45(2), March.
    2. Magdalena Brzozowicz & Michał Krawczyk & Przemysław Kusztelak, 2017. "Do anchors hold for real? Anchoring effect and hypothetical bias in declared WTP," Working Papers 2017-24, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    3. Ladenburg, Jacob & Olsen, Søren Bøye, 2014. "Augmenting short Cheap Talk scripts with a repeated Opt-Out Reminder in Choice Experiment surveys," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(C), pages 39-63.
    4. Chavez, Daniel E. & Palma, Marco A. & Nayga Jr., Rodolfo M., 2017. "When does real become consequential in non-hypothetical choice experiments?," 2018 Annual Meeting, February 2-6, 2018, Jacksonville, Florida 266327, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
    5. Wuepper, David & Clemm, Alexandra & Wree, Philipp, 2019. "The preference for sustainable coffee and a new approach for dealing with hypothetical bias," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 158(C), pages 475-486.
    6. Penn, Jerrod & Hu, Wuyang, 2016. "Making the Most of Cheap Talk in an Online Survey," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, Boston, Massachusetts 236171, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    7. Roy Brouwer & Solomon Tarfasa, 2020. "Testing hypothetical bias in a framed field experiment," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 68(3), pages 343-357, September.
    8. Sang Hyeon Lee & Doo Bong Han & Vincenzina Caputo & Rodolfo M. Nayga Jr., 2015. "Consumers’ Valuation for a Reduced Salt Product: A Nonhypothetical Choice Experiment," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 63(4), pages 563-582, December.
    9. Zhai, Qianqian & Kassas, Bachir & Zhao, Shuoli & Chen, Lijun & Chen, Chao, 2020. "Investigating Preference Inconsistencies in Incentive Structures that Account for House Money Effects," 2020 Annual Meeting, July 26-28, Kansas City, Missouri 304584, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    10. Magdalena Brzozowicz & Michał Krawczyk, 2020. "Honey, Mugs and Caricatures: anchors on prices of consumer goods only hold hypothetically," Working Papers 2020-40, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
    11. Kirsten, Johann & Vermeulen, Hes & van Zyl, Karlien & du Rand, Gerrie & du Plessis, Henrietta & Weissnar, Tessa, 2017. "Do South African Consumers have an Appetite for an Origin-based Certification System for Meat Products? A Synthesis of Studies on Perceptions, Preferences and Experiments," International Journal on Food System Dynamics, International Center for Management, Communication, and Research, vol. 8(1), pages 1-18, January.
    12. Balcombe, Kelvin & Bradley, Dylan & Fraser, Iain & Hussein, Mohamud, 2016. "Consumer preferences regarding country of origin for multiple meat products," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 49-62.
    13. Moser, Riccarda & Raffaelli, Roberta, 2014. "Does attribute cut-off elicitation affect choice consistency? Contrasting hypothetical and real-money choice experiments," Journal of choice modelling, Elsevier, vol. 11(C), pages 16-29.
    14. Reinhard Uehleke & Bodo Sturm, 2017. "The Influence of Collective Action on the Demand for Voluntary Climate Change Mitigation in Hypothetical and Real Situations," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 67(3), pages 429-454, July.
    15. Mohammed H. Alemu & Søren B. Olsen, 2017. "Can a Repeated Opt-Out Reminder remove hypothetical bias in discrete choice experiments? An application to consumer valuation of novel food products," IFRO Working Paper 2017/05, University of Copenhagen, Department of Food and Resource Economics.
    16. Nicolas Krucien & Amiram Gafni & Nathalie Pelletier‐Fleury, 2015. "Empirical Testing of the External Validity of a Discrete Choice Experiment to Determine Preferred Treatment Option: The Case of Sleep Apnea," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 24(8), pages 951-965, August.
    17. Vlaeminck, Pieter & Vranken, Liesbet, 2015. "Do labels capture consumers’ actual willingness to pay for Fair Trade characteristics?," Working Papers 206438, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Centre for Agricultural and Food Economics.
    18. Virpi Lehtoranta & Anna-Kaisa Kosenius & Elina Seppälä, 2017. "Watershed Management Benefits in a Hypothetical, Real Intention and Real Willingness to Pay Approach," Water Resources Management: An International Journal, Published for the European Water Resources Association (EWRA), Springer;European Water Resources Association (EWRA), vol. 31(13), pages 4117-4132, October.
    19. Jürgen Fleiß & Kurt A. Ackermann & Eva Fleiß & Ryan O. Murphy & Alfred Posch, 2020. "Social and environmental preferences: measuring how people make tradeoffs among themselves, others, and collective goods," Central European Journal of Operations Research, Springer;Slovak Society for Operations Research;Hungarian Operational Research Society;Czech Society for Operations Research;Österr. Gesellschaft für Operations Research (ÖGOR);Slovenian Society Informatika - Section for Operational Research;Croatian Operational Research Society, vol. 28(3), pages 1049-1067, September.

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