Measuring risk aversion among the urban poor in Kolkata, India
We examine risk preferences in an urban setting in a low-income developing country with nonstudent subjects by adapting the experimental approach of Holt and Laury (HL; 2002). We conducted 22 group experiments with 404 participants and used in-kind payoffs. The average respondent was ‘risk-averse’ (the midpoint of Constant Relative Risk Aversion (CRRA) intervals among participants was 0.53, roughly in line with most similar studies in poor countries). Like most other studies, we find weak correlations between risk aversion and most socio-economic characteristics. Importantly, a sizeable minority had difficulty understanding the experiment, and participants were influenced by the context in which the experiments occurred (these problems are not unique to our study). Our article adds to a growing literature that suggests that risk aversion elicitation approaches are sensitive to context and cognitive abilities of participants.
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Volume (Year): 20 (2013)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
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References listed on IDEAS
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- Chetan Dave & Catherine Eckel & Cathleen Johnson & Christian Rojas, 2010. "Eliciting risk preferences: When is simple better?," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 41(3), pages 219-243, December.
- Sarah Jacobson & Ragan Petrie, 2009. "Learning from mistakes: What do inconsistent choices over risk tell us?," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 38(2), pages 143-158, April. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
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