NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Using Preference Estimates to Customize Incentives: An Application to Polio Vaccination Drives in Pakistan

James Andreoni, Michael Callen, Yasir Khan, Karrar Jaffar, Charles Sprenger

NBER Working Paper No. 22019
Issued in February 2016, Revised in April 2018
NBER Program(s):Development Economics, Political Economy

We use structural estimates of time preferences to customize incentives for polio vaccinators in Lahore, Pakistan. We measure time preferences using intertemporal allocations of effort, and derive the mapping between these structural estimates and individually optimized incentives. We evaluate the effect of matching contract terms to discounting parameters in a subsequent experiment with the same vaccinators. This exercise provides a test of the specific point predictions given by structural estimates of discounting parameters. We demonstrate that tailoring contract terms to individual discounting moves allocation behavior significantly towards the intended objective.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w22019

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