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A General Method for Valuing Non-Market Goods Using Wellbeing Data: Three-Stage Wellbeing Valuation

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  • Daniel Fujiwara

Abstract

Subjective wellbeing data is becoming increasingly popular in economics research. The wellbeing valuation approach uses wellbeing data instead of data gleaned from preferences to attach monetary values to non-market goods. This method could be an important alternative to preference-based valuation methods such as contingent valuation, but there are a number of significant technical deficiencies with the current methodology. It is argued that the current method derives biased estimates of the value of non-market goods. The paper presents Three-Stage Wellbeing Valuation, a new approach to valuation using subjective wellbeing data that solves for the main technical problems and as a result derives estimates of welfare change and value that are consistent with welfare economic theory. As an example, I derive robust values associated with unemployment using the new approach and compare these to biased values derived from the standard wellbeing valuation method. Values derived from Three-Stage Wellbeing Valuation can be used in cost-benefit analysis.

Suggested Citation

  • Daniel Fujiwara, 2013. "A General Method for Valuing Non-Market Goods Using Wellbeing Data: Three-Stage Wellbeing Valuation," CEP Discussion Papers dp1233, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  • Handle: RePEc:cep:cepdps:dp1233
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Simon Luechinger, 2009. "Valuing Air Quality Using the Life Satisfaction Approach," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(536), pages 482-515, March.
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    3. Susana Ferreira & Mirko Moro, 2010. "On the Use of Subjective Well-Being Data for Environmental Valuation," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 46(3), pages 249-273, July.
    4. Paul Dolan & Robert Metcalfe, 2008. "Comparing Willingness-to-Pay and Subjective Well-Being in the Context of Non-Market Goods," CEP Discussion Papers dp0890, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
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    9. Levinson, Arik, 2012. "Valuing public goods using happiness data: The case of air quality," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(9-10), pages 869-880.
    10. Erzo F. P. Luttmer, 2005. "Neighbors as Negatives: Relative Earnings and Well-Being," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 963-1002.
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    12. Bernard van den Berg & Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell, 2007. "Monetary valuation of informal care: the well-being valuation method," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(11), pages 1227-1244.
    13. Alois Stutzer & Bruno S. Frey, 2004. "Reported Subjective Well-Being: A Challenge for Economic Theory and Economic Policy," Schmollers Jahrbuch : Journal of Applied Social Science Studies / Zeitschrift für Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Duncker & Humblot, Berlin, vol. 124(2), pages 191-231.
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    Cited by:

    1. Murtin, Fabrice & Boarini, Romina & Cordoba, Juan Carlos & Ripoll, Marla, 2017. "Beyond GDP: Is there a law of one shadow price?," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 390-411.
    2. repec:eee:epplan:v:64:y:2017:i:c:p:116-126 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    subjective wellbeing; non-market valuation; cost-benefit analysis; unemployment; causal inference;

    JEL classification:

    • C39 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Multiple or Simultaneous Equation Models; Multiple Variables - - - Other
    • D6 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics
    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J68 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Public Policy

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