nep-dcm New Economics Papers
on Discrete Choice Models
Issue of 2019‒02‒11
six papers chosen by
Edoardo Marcucci
Università degli studi Roma Tre

  1. Seasonality Effects on Consumers Preferences Over Quality Attributes of Different Beef Products By Ali Ardeshiri; Spring Sampson; Joffre Swait
  2. Conservation or deterioration in heritage sites? Estimating willingness to pay for preservation By Ali Ardeshiri; Roya Etminani Ghasrodashti; Taha Hossein Rashidi; Mahyar Ardeshiri; Ken Willis
  3. Planning on a wider scale – Swedish forest owners’ preferences for landscape policy attributes By Bostedt, Göran; Zabel, Astrid; Ekvall, Hans
  4. Social interactions in health behaviors and conditions By Ana Balsa; Carlos Díaz
  5. Lifestyles, residential location, and transport mode use: A hierarchical latent class choice model By Ali Ardeshiri; Akshay Vij
  6. Eliciting Choice Correspondences A General Method and an Experimental Implementation By Elias Bouacida

  1. By: Ali Ardeshiri; Spring Sampson; Joffre Swait
    Abstract: Using discrete choice modelling, the study investigates 946 American consumers willingness-to-pay and preferences for diverse beef products. A novel experiment was used to elicit the number of beef products that each consumer would purchase. The range of products explored in this study included ground, diced, roast, and six cuts of steaks (sirloin, tenderloin, flank, flap, New York and cowboy or rib-eye). The outcome of the study suggests that US consumers vary in their preferences for beef products by season. The presence of a USDA certification logo is by far the most important factor affecting consumers willingness to pay for all beef cuts, which is also heavily dependent on season. In relation to packaging, US consumers have mixed preference for different beef products by season. The results from a scaled adjusted ordered logit model showed that after price, safety-related attributes such as certification logos, types of packaging, and antibiotic free and organic products are a stronger influence on American consumers choice. Furthermore, US consumers on average purchase diced and roast products more often in winter slow cooking season, than in summer, whereas New York strip and flank steak are more popular in the summer grilling season. This study provides valuable insights for businesses as well as policymakers to make inform decisions while considering how consumers relatively value among different labelling and product attributes by season and better address any ethical, safety and aesthetic concerns that consumers might have.
    Date: 2019–02
  2. By: Ali Ardeshiri; Roya Etminani Ghasrodashti; Taha Hossein Rashidi; Mahyar Ardeshiri; Ken Willis
    Abstract: A significant part of the United Nations World Heritage Sites (WHSs) is located in developing countries. These sites attract an increasing number of tourist and income to these countries. Unfortunately, many of these WHSs are in a poor condition due to climatic and environmental impacts; war and tourism pressure, requiring the urgent need for restoration and preservation (Tuan & Navrud, 2007). In this study, we characterise residents from Shiraz city (visitors and non-visitors) willingness to invest in the management of the heritage sites through models for the preservation of heritage and development of tourism as a local resource. The research looks at different categories of heritage sites within Shiraz city, Iran. The measurement instrument is a stated preference referendum task administered state-wide to a sample of 489 respondents, with the payment mechanism defined as a purpose-specific incremental levy of a fixed amount over a set period of years. A Latent Class Binary Logit model, using parametric constraints is used innovatively to deal with any strategic voting such as Yea-sayers and Nay-sayers, as well as revealing the latent heterogeneity among sample members. Results indicate that almost 14% of the sampled population is unwilling to be levied any amount (Nay-sayers) to preserve any heritage sites. Not recognizing the presence of nay-sayers in the data or recognizing them but eliminating them from the estimation will result in biased Willingness to Pay (WTP) results and, consequently, biased policy propositions by authorities. Moreover, it is found that the type of heritage site is a driver of WTP. The results from this study provide insights into the WTP of heritage site visitors and non-visitors with respect to avoiding the impacts of future erosion and destruction and contributing to heritage management and maintenance policies.
    Date: 2019–02
  3. By: Bostedt, Göran (CERE - the Center for Environmental and Resource Economics); Zabel, Astrid (School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, Bern University of Applied Sciences); Ekvall, Hans (Department of Forest Economics, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences)
    Abstract: A tax-fund system has been proposed to advance Swedish forest conservation. We present a choice experiment with Swedish private forest owners on preferences for attributes of a tax-fund system. Focusing on three aspects: (i) freedom to choose set-asides, (ii) equity issues, and (iii) frequency of nature inventories, we find two groups of forest owners. The first is opposed to interventions that could curtail liberty and oppose frequent nature inventories, while a smaller group would derive positive utility from joint decision-making. A tax-fund system would need to be designed in a participatory manner to reconcile forest owners, forest industry, and conservationists.
    Keywords: Choice experiments; biodiversity; boreal forest; landscape planning; Sweden
    JEL: Q23 Q28 Q51 Q58
    Date: 2019–01–28
  4. By: Ana Balsa; Carlos Díaz
    Abstract: We review the economic literature of the past 20 years on peer effects in health behaviors and conditions. We find consistent evidence of peer effects across a wide range of behaviors and outcomes (alcohol, body weight, food and nutrition, physical fitness, sexual behaviors, fertility, and mental health use) and across a diverse set of identification techniques (instrumental variables, network analysis, reduced form models, random assignment of peers, and discrete choice models of endogenous interactions). Despite the thorough evidence on the existence of peer effects, we still know little about the underlying mechanisms. Understanding these mechanisms is critical for the design of effective policies and constitutes the new stage in the research agenda.
    Keywords: Peer effects, social interactions, peer influence, health behaviors, health conditions, systematic review, substance use, obesity, sexual behavior, mental health
    Date: 2018
  5. By: Ali Ardeshiri; Akshay Vij
    Abstract: This study develops a hierarchical latent class choice model that captures the concurrent influence of lifestyles on household residential neighbourhood location and individual transport mode use decisions. The model is empirically evaluated using data from the 2010-12 California Household Travel Survey. The model identifies six household-level classes that differ in terms of their preferences for different neighbourhood attributes when deciding where to live and their household characteristics. Coincidentally, the model also identifies six individual-level classes that differ in terms of the travel modes that they consider when deciding how to travel, their sensitivity to different level-of-service attributes, and their individual characteristics. Household preferences for neighbourhood types and individual preferences for travel modes show expected patterns of correlation. In general, households that prefer to live in suburban neighbourhoods are more likely to consist of individuals that are car-dependent, and households that prefer to live in inner-city neighbourhoods are more likely to consist of individuals that are multimodal. However, our analysis also reveals interesting patterns of deviation. For example, high-income migrant households and median-income white households display strong preferences for suburban neighbourhoods, but individuals belonging to these households also have a high likelihood of being multimodal, with a strong preference for bicycling. We discuss how these patterns of correlation can be used to inform transport and land use policy in novel ways.
    Date: 2019–02
  6. By: Elias Bouacida (PSE - Paris School of Economics, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - INRA - Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
    Abstract: I introduce a general method for identifying choice correspondences experimentally, i.e., the sets of best alternatives of decision makers in each choice sets. Most of the revealed preference literature assumes that decision makers can choose sets. In contrast, most experiments force the choice of a single alternative in each choice set. In this paper, I allow decision makers to choose several alternatives, provide a small incentive for each alternative chosen, and then randomly select one for payment. I derive the conditions under which the method at least partially identifies the choice correspondence, by obtaining supersets and subsets for each choice set. I illustrate the method with an experiment, in which subjects chose between four paid tasks. I can retrieve the full choice correspondence for 26% of subjects and bind it for another 46%. Subjects chose sets of size 2 or larger 60% of the time, whereas only 3% of them always chose singletons. I then show that 46% of all observed choices can be rationalized by complete, reflexive and transitive preferences in my experiment, i.e., satisfy the Weak Axiom of Revealed Preferences – WARP hereafter. Weakening the classical model, incomplete preferences or just-noticeable difference preferences do not rationalize more choice correspondences. Going beyond WARP, however, I show that complete, reflexive and transitive preferences with menu-dependent choices rationalize 93% of observed choices. Having elicited choice correspondences allows me to conclude that indifference is widespread in the experiment. These results pave the way for exploring various behavioral models with a unified method.
    Keywords: choice correspondences,revealed preferences,welfare,indifference,WARP,justnoticeable preferences,aggregation of preferences
    Date: 2019–01

This nep-dcm issue is ©2019 by Edoardo Marcucci. It is provided as is without any express or implied warranty. It may be freely redistributed in whole or in part for any purpose. If distributed in part, please include this notice.
General information on the NEP project can be found at For comments please write to the director of NEP, Marco Novarese at <>. Put “NEP” in the subject, otherwise your mail may be rejected.
NEP’s infrastructure is sponsored by the School of Economics and Finance of Massey University in New Zealand.