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Published July 28, 2020 | Submitted
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Using Preference Estimates to Customize Incentives: An Application to Polio Vaccination Drives in Pakistan


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.

Additional Information

© 2016 by James Andreoni, Michael Callen, Yasir Khan, Karrar Jaffar, and Charles Sprenger. All rights reserved. Short sections of text, not to exceed two paragraphs, may be quoted without explicit permission provided that full credit, including © notice, is given to the source. NBER Working Paper No. 22019. Issued in February 2016, Revised in April 2018.

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