Review of Behavioral Economics > Vol 3 > Issue 2

Three Risk-elicitation Methods in the Field: Evidence from Rural Senegal

Gary Charness, University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, , Angelino Viceisza, Spelman College, Atlanta, USA,
Suggested Citation
Gary Charness and Angelino Viceisza (2016), "Three Risk-elicitation Methods in the Field: Evidence from Rural Senegal", Review of Behavioral Economics: Vol. 3: No. 2, pp 145-171.

Publication Date: 14 Jul 2016
© 2016 G. Charness and A. Viceisza
Economic theory
JEL Codes: B49C91C93O13O20
Risk-elicitationField ExperimentsLaboratory experiments in the fieldComprehensionRural SenegalMicroeconomics of DevelopmentRisk PreferencesChoice under Risk/Uncertainty


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In this article:
1. Introduction 
2. Taxonomy of Elicitation Methods and Existing Evidence 
3. New Experimental Evidence 
4. Discussion 


In the past decade, it has become common to use simple laboratory games and decision tasks as a device for measuring risk preferences in the developing world. In this paper, we build on existing taxonomies for risk-elicitation and discuss pros and cons of using such methods in developing-country contexts. We use three distinct riskelicitation mechanisms (the Holt–Laury task, the Gneezy–Potters mechanism, and a non-incentivized willingness-to-risk scale) and subjects from rural Senegal. Our study provides some guidance to researchers wishing to use risk-elicitation mechanisms in the rural developing world.