Does question format matter? Valuing an endangered species
A three-way treatment design is used to compare contingent valuation response formats. Respondents are asked to value an endangered species (the red-cockaded woodpecker) and the restoration of its habitat following a natural disaster. For three question formats (open-ended, payment card, and double-bounded dichotomous choice), differences in survey response rates, item non-response rates, and protest bids are examined. Bootstrap techniques are used to compare means across formats and to explore differences in willingness to pay (WTP) distribution functions. Convergent validity is found in a comparison of mean WTP values, although some differences are apparent in the cumulative distribution functions. Differences across formats are also identified in item non-response rates and proportion of protest bids. Overall, the payment card format exhibits desirable properties relative to the other two formats.
Reaves, DW; Kramer, RA; Holmes, TP
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