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Recent developments in the experimental elicitation of time preference

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  • Stephen L. Cheung

Abstract

This methodological survey reviews recent developments in the design of experiments to elicit individuals' time preferences, with a focus on the measurement or control for potentially non-linear utility. While the objective of a time preference experiment is usually to estimate parameters of a discount function, assumptions concerning the nature of utility may have an important influence upon these estimates. The survey classifies experiment designs on two dimensions: whether they assume an equivalence between utility under risk and over time, and whether they result in an estimate of the curvature of utility.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephen L. Cheung, 2015. "Recent developments in the experimental elicitation of time preference," QuBE Working Papers 034, QUT Business School.
  • Handle: RePEc:qut:qubewp:wp034
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    File URL: http://external-apps.qut.edu.au/business/documents/QuBEWorkingPapers/2015/Survey.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Andersen, Steffen & Harrison, Glenn W. & Lau, Morten I. & Rutström, E. Elisabet, 2014. "Discounting behavior: A reconsideration," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 15-33.
    2. Steffen Andersen & Glenn W. Harrison & Morten I. Lau & E. Elisabet Rutström, 2008. "Eliciting Risk and Time Preferences," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 76(3), pages 583-618, May.
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    4. Susan Laury & Melayne McInnes & J. Todd Swarthout, 2012. "Avoiding the curves: Direct elicitation of time preferences," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 44(3), pages 181-217, June.
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    7. Glenn W. Harrison & Morten I. Lau & Melonie B. Williams, 2002. "Estimating Individual Discount Rates in Denmark: A Field Experiment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(5), pages 1606-1617, December.
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    12. Cheung, Stephen L., 2015. "Eliciting utility curvature and time preference," Working Papers 2015-01, University of Sydney, School of Economics.
    13. Arthur E. Attema & Han Bleichrodt & Yu Gao & Zhenxing Huang & Peter P. Wakker, 2016. "Measuring Discounting without Measuring Utility," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(6), pages 1476-1494, June.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Jindrich Matousek, 2018. "Individual Discount Rates: A Meta-Analysis of the Experimental Evidence," Working Papers IES 2018/40, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, revised Dec 2018.
    2. W. David Bradford & Paul Dolan & Matteo M. Galizzi, 2019. "Looking ahead: Subjective time perception and individual discounting," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 58(1), pages 43-69, February.
    3. Cheung, Stephen L., 2015. "Eliciting utility curvature and time preference," Working Papers 2015-01, University of Sydney, School of Economics.
    4. Felix Koelle & Thomas Lauer, 2018. "Cooperation, Discounting, and the Effects of Delayed Costs and Benefits," Discussion Papers 2018-10, The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    time preference; discounted utility; instantaneous utility; choice list;

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • D03 - Microeconomics - - General - - - Behavioral Microeconomics: Underlying Principles
    • D90 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - General

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