NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Aaron Strong

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Working Papers and Chapters

August 2012Measuring Price Elasticities for Residential Water Demand with Limited Information
with H. Allen Klaiber, V. Kerry Smith, Michael Kaminsky: w18293
This paper exploits the seasonal and annual changes in marginal prices for water to estimate the price elasticity of demand by residential households for water. It uses the changes in distributions of water using the census block group levels in response to changes in marginal prices of water for matched months across years. This strategy reduces the interaction effects of outdoor use and demographic fact in determining responsiveness to price. By comparing years that vary in overall water availability the framework can recover measures of how responses to price vary with season and draught conditions. The application is the urban Phoenix metropolitan area.
September 2008Reconsidering the Economics of Demand Analysis with Kinked Budget Constraints
with V. Kerry Smith: w14304
This paper has two objectives. First, we identify a problem with the ability of the discrete-continuous choice (DCC) framework and conditional demand functions to fully describe consumer preferences in the presence of kinked budget constraints. Second, we propose and illustrate an alternative, preference based, method for estimating consumer responses to price changes under these conditions. Our preference based approach yields price elasticities on the order of 0.4 and a "utilities expenditure" elasticity of near unity. This research highlights the possibility that households may be more sensitive to price schedules than previously thought. It is recognizes commitments to commodities such as pools or outdoor landscaping influence how water consumption responds to price changes as pa...
August 2008Public or Private Production of Food Safety: What Do U.S. Consumers Want?
with V. Kerry Smith, Carol Mansfield: w14287
This paper reports estimates of consumers' preferences for plans to improve food safety. The plans are distinguished based on whether they address the ex ante risk of food borne illness or the ex post effects of the illness. They are also distinguished based on whether they focus on a public good -- reducing risk of illness for all consumers or allowing individual households to reduce their private risks of contracting a food borne pathogen. Based on a National Survey conducted in 2007 using the Knowledge Network internet panel our findings indicate consumers favor ex ante risk reductions and are willing to pay approximately $250 annually to reduce the risk of food borne illness. Moreover, they prefer private to public approaches and would not support efforts to reduce the severity of case...

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