IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this paper

An Empirical Investigation of Biased Survey Data and an Attempted Cure


  • James E. Prieger

    (Department of Economics, University of California Davis)


In this paper I investigate response bias in survey data on annual driving mileage and evaluate the performance of a proposed remedy, Orbit. Individuals systematically exaggerate their deviation from the sample average, and using the self-reported data leads to misleading estimates of the income elasticity of travel mileage. I extend the Orbit procedure, which is designed to correct for reporting bias, to allow misreporting at the lower censoring point. Orbit fails to detect the nature of the bias and distorts the income elasticity estimate even further. The message for practitioners using biased data is therefore a cautionary one.

Suggested Citation

  • James E. Prieger, 2004. "An Empirical Investigation of Biased Survey Data and an Attempted Cure," Working Papers 44, University of California, Davis, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:cda:wpaper:04-4

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hahn Robert W. & Prieger James E, 2007. "The Impact of Driver Cell Phone Use on Accidents," The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy, De Gruyter, vol. 6(1), pages 1-39, January.
    2. Klein, Roger & Sherman, Robert, 1997. "Estimating new product demand from biased survey data," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 76(1-2), pages 53-76.
    3. Roger W. Klein & Robert P. Sherman, 2002. "Shift Restrictions and Semiparametric Estimation in Ordered Response Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(2), pages 663-691, March.
    4. Goldberg, Pinelopi Koujianou, 1998. "The Effects of the Corporate Average Fuel Efficiency Standards in the US," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 46(1), pages 1-33, March.
    5. Oyer, Paul, 2004. "Recall bias among displaced workers," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 82(3), pages 397-402, March.
    6. Hsiao, Cheng & Sun, Bao-Hong, 1998. "Modeling survey response bias - with an analysis of the demand for an advanced electronic device," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 89(1-2), pages 15-39, November.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Hennessy, Hugh & Tol, Richard S.J., 2011. "The impact of tax reform on new car purchases in Ireland," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(11), pages 7059-7067.

    More about this item


    Orbit; response bias; travel demand; semiparametric estimation; censoring; ordered choice data.;

    JEL classification:

    • C42 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods: Special Topics - - - Survey Methods
    • C52 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric Modeling - - - Model Evaluation, Validation, and Selection
    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities
    • C14 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Semiparametric and Nonparametric Methods: General
    • R41 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics - - - Transportation: Demand, Supply, and Congestion; Travel Time; Safety and Accidents; Transportation Noise


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cda:wpaper:04-4. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Scott Dyer). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.