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Testing unilateral and bilateral link formation

  • Margherita Comola

    (EEP-PSE - Ecole d'Économie de Paris - Paris School of Economics - Ecole d'Économie de Paris, PSE - Paris-Jourdan Sciences Economiques - CNRS : UMR8545 - École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) - École des Ponts ParisTech (ENPC) - École normale supérieure [ENS] - Paris)

  • Marcel Fafchamps

    (Department of Economics - University of Oxford - University of Oxford)

We propose a test of whether self-reported network data is best seen as an actual link or willingness to link and, in the latter case, whether this link is generated by an unilateral or bilateral link formation process. We illustrate this test using survey answers to a risk-sharing question in an African village. We find that bilateral link formation fits the data better than unilateral link formation, but the data are best interpreted as willingness to link rather than an actual link. We then expand the model to include self-censoring and find it to fit the data significantly better than willingness to link. This suggests that, in our data, the data generating process behind self-reported links is a hybrid between an actual link and willingness to link.

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Paper provided by HAL in its series PSE Working Papers with number halshs-00574971.

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Date of creation: Dec 2009
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Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-00574971
Note: View the original document on HAL open archive server: http://halshs.archives-ouvertes.fr/halshs-00574971
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  1. Stefan Dercon & Joachim De Weerdt, 2002. "Risk-sharing Networks and Insurance against illness," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2002-16, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  2. Guenter Hitsch & Ali Hortacsu, 2005. "What Makes You Click? An Empirical Analysis of Online Dating," 2005 Meeting Papers 207, Society for Economic Dynamics.
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