Choice experiments (CEs) are a powerful – and relatively inexpensive – tool to create demand forecasts for new markets and to assess the impact of public and private projects that aim at steering choice behavior. However, CEs are confronted with major challenges such as the presence of hypothetical bias, the use of decision-making heuristics, and the need to improve the experimental design and layout of questionnaires. Consequently, there is much room for empirical and methodological advances in conducting and analyzing CEs. A first concern, that we will address, is to investigate and empirically test the validity of compensatory models based on stable preferences. A second focus area is the investigation of the causes for the differences between what respondents say they will do and their actual behavior. A third issue is the transferability of the many ad hoc case studies that often yield context-dependent results. Until now, researchers in Flanders have tackled these challenges in an individual way. Addressing these challenges across disciplines and research groups in an organized way and sharing of knowledge and good practices is therefore one of the main objectives of this research community. We also want to increase scientific cooperation with both domestic and foreign partners through the development of joint project applications. As such Flemish CE-based research will become internationally recognized.
SRC partners, besides our research group, are the following:
- the CEDON (KU Leuven, Prof. Rousseau),
- the Division of Bioeconomics (KU Leuven, Prof. Maertens),
- the ORSTAT (KU Leuven, Prof. Vandebroek),
- the Department of Agricultural Economics (Ghent University, Prof. Verbeke),
- the Choice Experiment Methodology research group (Antwerp University, Prof. Goos),
- the Econometrics Research Group (University of the Basque Country, Prof. Mariel),
- the Erasmus Choice Modelling Centre (Erasmus University, Prof. Donkers),
- the Institute of Transport and Logistics Studies (University of Sydney, Prof. Bliemer),
- the Environmental Economics and Policy research group (Institute for ecological economy, dr. Meyerhoff),
- the Department of geography and sustainable development (University of St Andrews, Prof. Hanley),
- the Health Economics Research Unit (University of Aberdeen, Prof. Ryan),
- and the Department of Land, Environment, Agriculture and Forestry (University of Padova, Prof. Thiene).