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Testing the Fundamental Assumption of Choice Experiments: Are Values Absolute or Relative?

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Listed:
  • Tiziana Luisetti
  • Ian J. Bateman
  • R. Kerry Turner

Abstract

A split sample experiment is conducted to test one of the most fundamental assumptions underpinning choice experiments in an environmental setting: whether stated values are absolute or relative. The test uses a natural experiment involving respondents at different home locations relative to potential new wetland sites. Respondents were presented with one of two ranges of distances. An absolute value interpretation requires that the functional relations with distance derived from these two ranges be consistent with each other. We reject a null hypothesis of no range bias, suggesting that respondents may perceive attribute levels in a relative rather than absolute sense.

Suggested Citation

  • Tiziana Luisetti & Ian J. Bateman & R. Kerry Turner, 2011. "Testing the Fundamental Assumption of Choice Experiments: Are Values Absolute or Relative?," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 87(2), pages 284-296.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:87:y:2011:ii:1:p:284-296
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Carlsson, Fredrik & Martinsson, Peter, 2001. "Do Hypothetical and Actual Marginal Willingness to Pay Differ in Choice Experiments?: Application to the Valuation of the Environment," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 41(2), pages 179-192, March.
    2. Carson, Richard & Flores, Nicholas E. & Hanemann, W. Michael, 1998. "Sequencing and Valuing Public Goods," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 36(3), pages 314-323, November.
    3. Louviere,Jordan J. & Hensher,David A. & Swait,Joffre D., 2000. "Stated Choice Methods," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521788304, October.
    4. Ian J. Bateman & Brett H. Day & Diane P. Dupont & Stavros Georgiou, 2009. "Procedural Invariance Testing of the One-and-One-Half-Bound Dichotomous Choice Elicitation Method," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 91(4), pages 806-820, November.
    5. Brett Day & Ian Bateman & Iain Lake, 2007. "Beyond implicit prices: recovering theoretically consistent and transferable values for noise avoidance from a hedonic property price model," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 37(1), pages 211-232, May.
    6. Bateman, Ian J. & Cole, Matthew & Cooper, Philip & Georgiou, Stavros & Hadley, David & Poe, Gregory L., 2004. "On visible choice sets and scope sensitivity," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 47(1), pages 71-93, January.
    7. John P. Hoehn, 1991. "Valuing the Multidimensional Impacts of Environmental Policy: Theory and Methods," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 73(2), pages 289-299.
    8. Hanley, Nick & Adamowicz, Wiktor & Wright, Robert E., 2005. "Price vector effects in choice experiments: an empirical test," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 227-234, October.
    9. Ian Bateman & Brett Day & Graham Loomes & Robert Sugden, 2007. "Can ranking techniques elicit robust values?," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 34(1), pages 49-66, February.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Kragt, Marit Ellen, 2013. "Comparing models of unobserved heterogeneity in environmental choice experiments," Working Papers 144447, University of Western Australia, School of Agricultural and Resource Economics.
    2. Börger, Tobias & Hattam, Caroline & Burdon, Daryl & Atkins, Jonathan P. & Austen, Melanie C., 2014. "Valuing conservation benefits of an offshore marine protected area," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 108(C), pages 229-241.
    3. Marit Kragt & Jeffrey Bennett, 2012. "Attribute Framing in Choice Experiments: How Do Attribute Level Descriptions Affect Value Estimates?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 51(1), pages 43-59, January.
    4. Schaafsma, Marije & Brouwer, Roy & Rose, John, 2012. "Directional heterogeneity in WTP models for environmental valuation," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(C), pages 21-31.
    5. Cristiano Franceschinis & Riccardo Scarpa & Mara Thiene & John Rose & Michele Moretto & Raffaele Cavalli, 2016. "Exploring the Spatial Heterogeneity of Individual Preferences for Ambient Heating Systems," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(6), pages 1-19, May.
    6. Remoundou, Kyriaki & Kountouris, Yiannis & Koundouri, Phoebe, 2012. "Is the value of an environmental public good sensitive to the providing institution?," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 381-395.
    7. repec:eee:ecoser:v:8:y:2014:i:c:p:65-74 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Kyriaki Remoundou & Fikret Adaman & Phoebe Koundouri & Paulo Nunes, 2014. "Is the value of environmental goods sensitive to the public funding scheme? Evidence from a marine restoration programme in the Black Sea," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 47(4), pages 1173-1192, December.
    9. Schaafsma, Marije & Brouwer, Roy & Liekens, Inge & De Nocker, Leo, 2014. "Temporal stability of preferences and willingness to pay for natural areas in choice experiments: A test–retest," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 243-260.
    10. repec:eee:ecolec:v:148:y:2018:i:c:p:36-42 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Marit Kragt, 2013. "The Effects of Changing Cost Vectors on Choices and Scale Heterogeneity," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 54(2), pages 201-221, February.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D81 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Criteria for Decision-Making under Risk and Uncertainty
    • Q26 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Recreational Aspects of Natural Resources

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