We examine starting point bias in double-bounded dichotomous choice contingent valuation surveys. We investigate (1) the seriousness of the biases for the location and scale parameters of the willingness to pay (WTP) in the presence of starting point bias; (2) whether or not these biases depend on the distribution of WTP and on the bid design; and (3) how well a commonly used diagnostic for starting point bias—a test of the null that bid set dummies entered in the right-hand side of the WTP model are jointly equal to zero—performs under various circumstances. Monte Carlo simulations suggest that the effect of ignoring starting point bias depends on the bid design and on the true distribution of WTP. A well-balanced, symmetric bid design may result in very modest biases even when the anchoring mechanism is very strong. The power of bid set dummies in detecting starting point bias is low. They tend to account for misspecifications in the distribution assumed by the researcher for the latent WTP, rather than capturing the presence of starting point bias.

Implications of Bid Design and Willingness-To-Pay Distribution for Starting Point Bias in Double-Bounded Contingent Valuation Surveys

VERONESI, Marcella;
2011

Abstract

We examine starting point bias in double-bounded dichotomous choice contingent valuation surveys. We investigate (1) the seriousness of the biases for the location and scale parameters of the willingness to pay (WTP) in the presence of starting point bias; (2) whether or not these biases depend on the distribution of WTP and on the bid design; and (3) how well a commonly used diagnostic for starting point bias—a test of the null that bid set dummies entered in the right-hand side of the WTP model are jointly equal to zero—performs under various circumstances. Monte Carlo simulations suggest that the effect of ignoring starting point bias depends on the bid design and on the true distribution of WTP. A well-balanced, symmetric bid design may result in very modest biases even when the anchoring mechanism is very strong. The power of bid set dummies in detecting starting point bias is low. They tend to account for misspecifications in the distribution assumed by the researcher for the latent WTP, rather than capturing the presence of starting point bias.
Anchoring; bid design; contingent valuation; double-bounded dichotomous choice format; Monte Carlo simulations; starting point bias; willingness-to-pay
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/389927
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