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Hypothetical and convenience sample biases in value orientations ring games

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  • Emmanouil Mentzakis
  • Stuart Mestelman

Abstract

The social value orientations ring game is often used to identify behavioural types and provide insight regarding choices made by individuals in market or non-market environments. However, research on the impact of providing salient rewards to individuals making choices in the ring game is sparse. As well, the comparison of student and non-student samples with regard to social value orientations is limited. Following literature from other experimental fields, this paper is concerned with the presence of hypothetical bias (i.e. difference between subject behaviour when rewards are not salient (stated intentions) and actual subject behaviour when rewards are salient) and convenience sample bias (i.e. difference in findings of students versus non-student community subjects) in the social value orientation ring game. Looking at the social value orientation measures and their consistency, we find no evidence of hypothetical bias but significant differences when comparing student and community samples. Our findings suggest caution in generalizing value orientation results across different populations while they support the collection of value orientations at lower cost without compromising the consistency of the results.

Suggested Citation

  • Emmanouil Mentzakis & Stuart Mestelman, 2010. "Hypothetical and convenience sample biases in value orientations ring games," Department of Economics Working Papers 2010-06, McMaster University.
  • Handle: RePEc:mcm:deptwp:2010-06
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    Cited by:

    1. Jeremiah Hurley & Emmanouil Mentzakis, 2011. "Existence and Magnitude of Health-related Externalities: Evidence from a Choice Experiment," Department of Economics Working Papers 2011-01, McMaster University.
    2. Mentzakis, Emmanouil & Mestelman, Stuart, 2013. "Hypothetical bias in value orientations ring games," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 120(3), pages 562-565.
    3. Hurley, Jeremiah & Mentzakis, Emmanouil, 2013. "Health-related externalities: Evidence from a choice experiment," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(4), pages 671-681.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    value orientations; hypothetical bias; convenience sample bias;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods

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