Testing the fundamental assumption of choice experiments : are values absolute or relative?
We test one of the most fundamental of all assumptions underpinning choice experiments; that any given attribute level is comprehended in its absolute form rather than relative to the other levels of that attribute. A split sample test uses a natural experiment arising from respondents differing distances from a set of potential new wetland recreation sites. Respondents were presented with one of two ranges of distances. Absolute value interpretation requires that the functional relation with distance derived from these two ranges be consistent with each other. This test failed with respondents exhibiting significant range bias effects.
R. Kerry Turner
Ian Julian Bateman
experimental economics; choice experiment; preference construction
Conference took place at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
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Conference event title
Annual conference of the European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists (EAERE 2008)