Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Papers,
Lund University, Department of Economics

No 2004:6: Using Choice Experiments to Assess Peoples' Preferences for Railway Transports of Hazardous Materials

Lena Winslott Hiselius ()
Additional contact information
Lena Winslott Hiselius: Department of Economics, Lund University, Postal: Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Lund University, Box 7082, S-220 07 Lund, Sweden

Abstract: This paper investigates whether the choice experiment approach can be used to assess peoples’ preferences and the determinants of these preferences in order to estimate the costs and benefits of different configurations of transports of hazardous materials on railways. In the study, changes in the exposure to hazardous materials that affected people are subjected to are used rather than changes in the accident risk. To the best knowledge of the writer, this has not been done before when studying peoples’ preferences towards hazardous materials. The answering rate and various tests of validity and consistency indicate that this method can be applied. Using a mail survey carried out in two cities in Sweden, tentative estimates are obtained on willingness to pay for a reduction in exposure as well as willingness to accept an increase in exposure. Distance to the railway has an effect on peoples’ preferences, as does owning one’s residence. The result also shows that the level of information influences people’s preferences. Receiving only little information regarding railway transports of hazardous materials, people prefer a reduction in exposure more strongly than people receiving more extensive information. The results may provide guidance on changes in the transport of hazardous materials especially since the attributes presented here may be influenced by policy makers.

Keywords: Transportation; Hazardous materials; Risk; Choice Experiments

JEL-codes: C25; D61; D81; R41

22 pages, February 9, 2004

Note: For written correspondence the author's address is: Department of Technology and Society, Box 118, S-221 00 Lund, Sweden.

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Published as
Lena Winslott Hiselius, (2005), 'Using Choice Experiments to Assess People's Preferences for Railway Transports of Hazardous Materials', Risk Analysis, vol 25, no 5, pages 1199-1214

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