nep-tur New Economics Papers
on Tourism Economics
Issue of 2013‒05‒24
four papers chosen by
Antonello Scorcu
University of Bologna

  1. Panel Travel Cost Count Data Models for On-Site Samples that Incorporate Unobserved Heterogeneity with Respect to the Impact of the Explanatory Variables By Hynes, Stephen; Greene, William
  2. Exploring cost heterogeneity in recreational demand By Doherty, Edel; Campbell, Danny; Hynes, Stephen
  3. Accounting for Cultural Dimensions in Estimating the Value of Coastal Zone Ecosystem Services using International Benefit Transfer By Hynes, Stephen; Norton, Daniel; Hanley, Nick
  4. Urbanity By Gabriel M. Ahfeldt

  1. By: Hynes, Stephen; Greene, William
    Abstract: In this paper, we examine heterogeneity in the trip preferences of recreationists by applying a random parameters negative binomial model and a latent class negative binomial model to a panel data set of beach users at a site on the west coast of Ireland. This is the first such attempt in the literature to account for heterogeneity with respect to the impact of the chosen explanatory variables in contingent behaviour travel cost models of demand where the researcher also must account for the fact that the sample data has been collected on-site. The analysis also develops individual consumer surplus estimates and finds that estimates are systematically affected by both the random parameter and latent class specifications. There is also evidence that accounting for individual heterogeneity improves the statistical fit of the models and provides a more informative description of the drivers of recreationalist trip behaviour.
    Keywords: Contingent behaviour, travel cost, count data, heterogeneity, latent class, random parameter, endogenous stratification, truncation, negative binomial, consumer surplus, Environmental Economics and Policy, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods,
    Date: 2012
  2. By: Doherty, Edel; Campbell, Danny; Hynes, Stephen
    Abstract: Farmland can confer significant public good benefits to society aside from its role in agricultural production. In this paper we investigate preferences of rural residents for the use of farmland as a recreational resource. In particular we use the choice experiment method to determine preferences for the development of farmland walking trails. Our modelling approach is to use a series of mixed logit models to assess the impact of alternative distributional assumptions for the cost coefficient on the welfare estimates associated with the provision of the trails. Our results reveal that using a mixture of discrete and continuous distributions to represent cost heterogeneity leads to a better model fit and lowest welfare estimates. Our results further reveal that Irish rural residents show positive preferences for the development of farmland walking trails in the Irish countryside.
    Keywords: Land use, mixed logit models, Environmental Economics and Policy, Land Economics/Use,
    Date: 2012
  3. By: Hynes, Stephen; Norton, Daniel; Hanley, Nick
    Abstract: Values for non-market goods can be expected to be sensitive to variations in the cultural contexts of beneficiaries. However, little progress has been made to date in adapting benefit transfer procedures for cultural variations. Using information from a study that ranked 62 societies with respect to nine attributes of their cultures, we develop an index that is then used to re-weight multiple coastal ecosystem service value estimates. We examine whether these culturally-adjusted Benefit Transfer (BT) estimates are statistically different than simply transferring the income-adjusted mean transfer estimates for each coastal ecosystem service from international study sites to the policy site. We find that once differences in income levels have been accounted for, the differences in cultural dimensions between study and policy sites actually have little impact on the magnitude of our transfer estimates. This is not a surprising result given that the majority of the study site estimates are derived from countries that share many ethnic, linguistic and other cultural similarities to the policy site. However, benefit adjustments based on cultural factors could have a much higher impacts in settings different to that investigated here.
    Keywords: Non-market goods, Benefit Transfer, coastal ecosystem service, Environmental Economics and Policy, Research Methods/ Statistical Methods, Resource /Energy Economics and Policy,
    Date: 2012
  4. By: Gabriel M. Ahfeldt
    Abstract: I define a composite amenity that provides aesthetic and consumption value to local residents: Urbanity. A novel data set of geo-tagged photos shared in internet communities serves as a proxy for urbanity. From the spatial pattern of house prices and photos I identify the value of urbanity in two of the largest cities in Europe: Berlin and London. I find an elasticity of indirect utility with respect to urbanity of about 1%. The aggregated willingness-to-pay equates to about $1bn per year in each city. The results demonstrate the important role cities play as centers of leisure, consumption, and beauty.
    Keywords: Amenities, consumer city, hedonic analysis, photography geography, property prices
    JEL: R20 R30
    Date: 2013–05

This nep-tur issue is ©2013 by Antonello Scorcu. 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.