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Identification and estimation of latent attitudes and their behavioral implications

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  • Richard Spady

    (Institute for Fiscal Studies and Johns Hopkins)

Abstract

This paper (i) formalizes conditions under which a population distribution of categorical responses to attitudinal questions (?tems? has a scale representation; (ii) develops tests for whether a particular sample of item responses is consistent with a scale representation; (iii) develops methods for nonparametrically estimating the relation between an outcome and a scale value; and (iv) generalizes the foregoing to the multi-scale case. An implication of these results is that the effect of multiple latent attitudes on behaviour can be identified, even though the attitudes of an individual can never be precisely observed. We illustrate our methods using survey data from the 1992 U.S. Presidential election, where the ?utcome' is an individual's vote and the ?tems' are expressions of social and policy preferences.

Suggested Citation

  • Richard Spady, 2006. "Identification and estimation of latent attitudes and their behavioral implications," CeMMAP working papers CWP12/06, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:ifs:cemmap:12/06
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    File URL: http://cemmap.ifs.org.uk/wps/cwp1206.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Cappellari, Lorenzo & Jenkins, Stephen P., 2006. "Summarizing multiple deprivation indicators," ISER Working Paper Series 2006-40, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
    2. Thiel, Hendrik & Thomsen, Stephan L., 2013. "Noncognitive skills in economics: Models, measurement, and empirical evidence," Research in Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(2), pages 189-214.
    3. El-Attar, Mayssun, 2007. "Trust, Child Care Technology Choice and Female Labor Force Participation," IZA Discussion Papers 3135, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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