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Preference Uncertainty, Preference Learning, and Paired Comparison Experiments

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  • David C. Kingsley
  • Thomas C. Brown

Abstract

Results from paired comparison experiments suggest that as respondents progress through a sequence of binary choices they become more consistent, apparently fine-tuning their preferences. Consistency may be indicated by the variance of the estimated valuation distribution measured by the error term in the random utility model. A significant reduction in the variance is shown to be consistent with a model of preference uncertainty allowing for preference learning. Respondents become more adept at discriminating among items as they gain experience considering and comparing them, suggesting that methods allowing for such experience may obtain more well founded values.

Suggested Citation

  • David C. Kingsley & Thomas C. Brown, 2010. "Preference Uncertainty, Preference Learning, and Paired Comparison Experiments," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 86(3).
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:86:y:2010:iii:1:p530-544
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alberini, Anna & Boyle, Kevin & Welsh, Michael, 2003. "Analysis of contingent valuation data with multiple bids and response options allowing respondents to express uncertainty," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 40-62, January.
    2. Cameron, Trudy Ann, 1988. "A new paradigm for valuing non-market goods using referendum data: Maximum likelihood estimation by censored logistic regression," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 355-379, September.
    3. John A. List, 2003. "Does Market Experience Eliminate Market Anomalies?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 118(1), pages 41-71.
    4. Welsh, Michael P. & Poe, Gregory L., 1998. "Elicitation Effects in Contingent Valuation: Comparisons to a Multiple Bounded Discrete Choice Approach," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 36(2), pages 170-185, September.
    5. Li Chuan-Zhong & Mattsson Leif, 1995. "Discrete Choice under Preference Uncertainty: An Improved Structural Model for Contingent Valuation," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 256-269, March.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Thunström, Linda & Nordström, Jonas & Shogren, Jason F., 2015. "Certainty and overconfidence in future preferences for food," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 101-113.
    2. LaRiviere, Jacob & Czajkowski, Mikołaj & Hanley, Nick & Aanesen, Margrethe & Falk-Petersen, Jannike & Tinch, Dugald, 2014. "The value of familiarity: Effects of knowledge and objective signals on willingness to pay for a public good," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 68(2), pages 376-389.
    3. Kingsley, David C. & Brown, Thomas C., 2013. "Value learning and the willingness to accept–willingness to pay disparity," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(3), pages 473-476.
    4. Dekker, T. & Koster, P.R. & Brouwer, R., 2012. "Changing with the tide: Semi-parametric estimation of preference dynamics," Serie Research Memoranda 0005, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
    5. Campbell, Danny & Boeri, Marco & Doherty, Edel & George Hutchinson, W., 2015. "Learning, fatigue and preference formation in discrete choice experiments," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 119(C), pages 345-363.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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