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Measuring and Bounding Experimenter Demand

Author(s): de Quidt, Jonathan; Haushofer, Johannes; Roth, Christopher

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Abstract: © Copyright 2018 by the American Economic Association. We propose a technique for assessing robustness to demand effects of findings from experiments and surveys. The core idea is that by deliberately inducing demand in a structured way we can bound its influence. We present a model in which participants respond to their beliefs about the researcher's objectives. Bounds are obtained by manipulating those beliefs with "demand treatments." We apply the method to 11 classic tasks, and estimate bounds averaging 0.13 standard deviations, suggesting that typical demand effects are probably modest. We also show how to compute demand-robust treatment effects and how to structurally estimate the model.
Publication Date: 1-Nov-2018
Citation: De Quidt, J, Haushofer, J, Roth, C. (2018). Measuring and bounding experimenter demand. American Economic Review, 108 (11), 3266 - 3302. doi:10.1257/aer.20171330
DOI: doi:10.1257/aer.20171330
ISSN: 0002-8282
EISSN: 1944-7981
Pages: 3266 - 3302
Type of Material: Journal Article
Journal/Proceeding Title: American Economic Review
Version: Final published version. Article is made available in OAR by the publisher's permission or policy.

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