IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/hhs/gunwpe/0649.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

How are you? How's it going? What's up? What's happening? Nudging people to tell us how they really are

Author

Listed:
  • Carlsson, Fredrik

    () (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)

  • Kataria, Mitesh

    () (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)

Abstract

We investigate a novel approach to reduce measurement error in subjective well-being (SWB) data. Using a between-subject design, half of the subjects are asked to promise to answer the survey questions truthfully in an attempt to make them commit to truth-telling. This allows us to experimentally test whether making a promise affects their responses. We find a statistically significant difference between mean stated well-being between the two groups (with and without a promise, although the effect sizes are rather small). We then investigate to what extent the differences in stated well-being also affect the inference from regressions models on the determinants of SWB. We find important differences in terms of size and statistical significance of the coefficients between the two models, despite the small effect sizes on the dependent stated well-being variable.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlsson, Fredrik & Kataria, Mitesh, 2016. "How are you? How's it going? What's up? What's happening? Nudging people to tell us how they really are," Working Papers in Economics 649, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0649
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/42256
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Charness, Gary & Dufwenberg, Martin, 2003. "Promises & Partnership," Research Papers in Economics 2003:3, Stockholm University, Department of Economics.
    2. Kataria, Mitesh & Winter, Fabian, 2013. "Third party assessments in trust problems with conflict of interest: An experiment on the effects of promises," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(1), pages 53-56.
    3. Jerry Hausman, 2001. "Mismeasured Variables in Econometric Analysis: Problems from the Right and Problems from the Left," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(4), pages 57-67, Fall.
    4. Tore Ellingsen & Magnus Johannesson, 2004. "Promises, Threats and Fairness," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(495), pages 397-420, April.
    5. Jacquemet, Nicolas & Joule, Robert-Vincent & Luchini, Stéphane & Shogren, Jason F., 2013. "Preference elicitation under oath," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 65(1), pages 110-132.
    6. Krueger, Alan B. & Schkade, David A., 2008. "The reliability of subjective well-being measures," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(8-9), pages 1833-1845, August.
    7. Joseph Cook & Dale Whittington & Do Gia Canh & F. Reed Johnson & Andrew Nyamete, 2007. "Reliability Of Stated Preferences For Cholera And Typhoid Vaccines With Time To Think In Hue, Vietnam," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 45(1), pages 100-114, January.
    8. Laura O. Taylor & Ronald G. Cummings, 1999. "Unbiased Value Estimates for Environmental Goods: A Cheap Talk Design for the Contingent Valuation Method," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(3), pages 649-665, June.
    9. Carlsson, Fredrik & Frykblom, Peter & Johan Lagerkvist, Carl, 2005. "Using cheap talk as a test of validity in choice experiments," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 89(2), pages 147-152, November.
    10. Richard Layard, 2006. "Happiness and Public Policy: a Challenge to the Profession," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(510), pages 24-33, March.
    11. Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2002. "What Can Economists Learn from Happiness Research?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 40(2), pages 402-435, June.
    12. repec:cup:apsrev:v:86:y:1992:i:02:p:404-417_08 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Gary Charness & Martin Dufwenberg, 2006. "Promises and Partnership," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 74(6), pages 1579-1601, November.
    14. Lusk, Jayson L. & Norwood, F. Bailey, 2009. "Bridging the gap between laboratory experiments and naturally occurring markets: An inferred valuation method," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 58(2), pages 236-250, September.
    15. John A. List, 2001. "Do Explicit Warnings Eliminate the Hypothetical Bias in Elicitation Procedures? Evidence from Field Auctions for Sportscards," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1498-1507, December.
    16. Hausman, J. A. & Abrevaya, Jason & Scott-Morton, F. M., 1998. "Misclassification of the dependent variable in a discrete-response setting," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 87(2), pages 239-269, September.
    17. Christoph Vanberg, 2008. "Why Do People Keep Their Promises? An Experimental Test of Two Explanations -super-1," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(6), pages 1467-1480, November.
    18. Jayson L. Lusk & F. Bailey Norwood, 2009. "An Inferred Valuation Method," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 85(3), pages 500-514.
    19. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Paul Frijters, 2004. "How Important is Methodology for the estimates of the determinants of Happiness?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 641-659, July.
    20. Sendhil Mullainathan & Marianne Bertrand, 2001. "Do People Mean What They Say? Implications for Subjective Survey Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 67-72, May.
    21. Hendrik Jürges, 2007. "True health vs response styles: exploring cross-country differences in self-reported health," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 16(2), pages 163-178.
    22. Joseph Cook, 2007. "Reliability Of Stated Preferences For Cholera And Typhoid Vaccines With Time To Think In Hue, Vietnam," EEPSEA Special and Technical Paper sp200701s1, Economy and Environment Program for Southeast Asia (EEPSEA), revised Jan 2007.
    23. Patricia Champ & Richard Bishop, 2001. "Donation Payment Mechanisms and Contingent Valuation: An Empirical Study of Hypothetical Bias," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 19(4), pages 383-402, August.
    24. Whittington, Dale & Smith, V. Kerry & Okorafor, Apia & Okore, Augustine & Liu, Jin Long & McPhail, Alexander, 1992. "Giving respondents time to think in contingent valuation studies: A developing country application," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 205-225, May.
    25. Johannesson, Magnus & Blomquist, Glenn C. & Blumenschein, Karen & Johansson, Per-olov & Liljas, Bengt & O'Conor, Richard M., 1999. "Calibrating Hypothetical Willingness to Pay Responses," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 21-32, April.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Blog mentions

    As found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
    1. How are you? How’s it going? What’s up? What’s happening? Nudging people to tell us how they really are
      by maximorossi in NEP-LTV blog on 2016-03-29 19:03:22

    More about this item

    Keywords

    measurement error; social desirability; subjective well-being; truth-telling;

    JEL classification:

    • C90 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - General
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    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:hhs:gunwpe:0649. 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: (Marie Andersson). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/naiguse.html .

    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.