Measuring Revisions to Subjective Expectations

Published in: Journal of risk and uncertainty, v. 36, no. 1, Feb. 2008, p. [43]-82

by Adeline Delavande

This paper develops a new metric to measure revisions to subjective expectations and proposes a survey design strategy that enables the estimation of the metric. As an application, the author analyzes how women update their expectations about the effectiveness of contraception methods. The women interviewed exhibit substantial heterogeneity in the way they revise their expectations with receipt of the same information. When relating the heterogeneity in the updating process to observable characteristics, the author finds that schooling, having a regular sexual partner and knowledge and use of birth control methods have a large impact on the revision process about the effectiveness of contraceptives.

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