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Mental health and the response to financial incentives: evidence from a survey incentives experiment

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  • Kung, Claryn S. J.
  • Johnston, David W.
  • Shields, Michael A.

Abstract

Although mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression are common, there is little research on whether individuals in poor mental health react differently from others to financial incentives. This paper exploits an experiment from the UK Understanding Society Innovation Panel to assess how the participation response to randomly-assigned financial incentives differs by mental health status. We find that individuals in good mental health are more likely to respond when offered a higher financial incentive, whereas those in poor mental health are indifferent to the increased incentive. We find no comparable differences for physical health.

Suggested Citation

  • Kung, Claryn S. J. & Johnston, David W. & Shields, Michael A., 2018. "Mental health and the response to financial incentives: evidence from a survey incentives experiment," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 90395, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  • Handle: RePEc:ehl:lserod:90395
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Moschion, Julie & van Ours, Jan C., 2022. "Do early episodes of depression and anxiety make homelessness more likely?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 202(C), pages 654-674.
    2. Xi Cen & David W. Johnston & Claryn S. J. Kung & Michael A. Shields & Eric C. Sun, 2021. "The link between health and economic preferences: Evidence from 22 OECD countries," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(4), pages 915-920, April.
    3. Ha Trong Nguyen & Huong Thu Le & Luke B Connelly, 2021. "Who's declining the “free lunch”? New evidence from the uptake of public child dental benefits," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 30(2), pages 270-288, February.
    4. Li, Fanlue & He, Ke & Wang, Yuejie & Zhang, Junbiao, 2021. "Does Indoor Air Pollution from Solid Fuels Influence the Mental Health of Rural Residents? Evidence from China," 2021 Conference, August 17-31, 2021, Virtual 315024, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
    5. Bradley, Cathy J. & Saunders, Heather G., 2020. "Impact of cash incentives for low-income individuals to seek a primary care visit on mental health outcomes: Evidence from a randomized controlled trial," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 265(C).

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    mental health; financial incentives; survey incentives experiment;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General

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