Contingent valuation

Department of Economics
MA «Исследовательская экономика»; MA «Экономика человека»

Course description

The course discusses main issues arising in the process of economic valuation of those goods that are not traded on any market. The students will discuss the goods that fall into this category (mostly public and quasi-public goods). The students will master main methods of non-tradable goods valuation, including direct (using contingent markets method with either willingness to pay or willingness to accept as a basis) and indirect (cost-benefit analysis or on the basis of indirect costs such as transport costs, time, etc.). the student will also learn about specific features of using surveys for such valuation.



Topic 1. Microeconomic bases

  • Utility and demand.
  • WTP vs. WTA.
  • Uncertainty.


Topic 2. Collecting and analysing data

  • Indirect measures (the time spend etc.).
  • Contingent valuation method.


Topic 3. Surveys technology

  • Incentives to say truth.
  • Validity and reliability.
  • Basic sourses of errors.
  • Measurement errors.



  • Mitchell R. C., Carson R. T. Using Surveys to Value Public Goods. Washington, DC, 1989.