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Eliciting probabilistic expectations with visual aids in developing countries: how sensitive are answers to variations in elicitation design?

  • Adeline Delavande
  • Xavier Giné
  • David McKenzie

Eliciting subjective probability distributions in developing countries is often based on visual aids such as beans to represent probabilities and intervals on a sheet of paper to represent the support. The authors conducted an experiment in India that tested the sensitivity of elicited expectations to variations in three facets of the elicitation methodology: the number of beans, the design of the support (pre-determined or self-anchored), and the ordering of questions. The results show remarkable robustness to variations in elicitation design. Nevertheless, the added precision offered by using more beans and a larger number of intervals with a predetermined support improves accuracy.

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Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Applied Econometrics.

Volume (Year): 26 (2011)
Issue (Month): 3 (04)
Pages: 479-497

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Handle: RePEc:wly:japmet:v:26:y:2011:i:3:p:479-497
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  1. Luseno, Winnie K. & McPeak, John G. & Barrett, Christopher B. & Little, Peter D. & Gebru, Getachew, 2003. "Assessing the Value of Climate Forecast Information for Pastoralists: Evidence from Southern Ethiopia and Northern Kenya," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(9), pages 1477-1494, September.
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  3. Delavande, Adeline & Giné, Xavier & McKenzie, David, 2011. "Measuring subjective expectations in developing countries: A critical review and new evidence," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(2), pages 151-163, March.
  4. Jeff Dominitz & Charles F. Manski, 1994. "Using Expectations Data to Study Subjective Income Expectations," Econometrics 9411003, EconWPA.
  5. McKenzie, David & Gibson, John & Stillman, Steven, 2007. "A Land of Milk and Honey with Streets Paved with Gold: Do Emigrants Have Over-Optimistic Expectations about Incomes Abroad?," IZA Discussion Papers 2788, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. Adeline Delavande, 2008. "Pill, Patch, Or Shot? Subjective Expectations And Birth Control Choice," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 49(3), pages 999-1042, 08.
  7. Michael D. Hurd & James P. Smith & Julie M. Zissimopoulos, 2002. "The Effects of Subjective Survival on Retirement and Social Security Claiming," Working Papers wp021, University of Michigan, Michigan Retirement Research Center.
  8. Adeline Delavande & Susann Rohwedder, 2008. "Eliciting Subjective Expectations in Internet Surveys," Working Papers 589, RAND Corporation Publications Department.
  9. Manski, Charles F. & Molinari, Francesca, 2010. "Rounding Probabilistic Expectations in Surveys," Journal of Business & Economic Statistics, American Statistical Association, vol. 28(2), pages 219-231.
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