Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Stephenson et al find "alarmingly high rates" of intimate partner violence among male couples

Social Science One making available data that "may rival the total amount that currently exists in the social sciences"

Stafford's findings on gender gap in children's allowances suggest entrenched nature of wage gap

More News

Highlights

Student volunteers needed for IAPHS Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, Oct 3-5. Register July 23.

West et al. examine HS seniors' nonmedical use of prescription stimulants to boost study

Seefeldt promoted to associate professor of social work, associate professor of public policy

Martha Bailey elected to the Board of Officers of the Society of Labor Economists

More Highlights

Next Brown Bag

More PSC brown bags, Fall 2018

Estimating Second Order Probability Beliefs from Subjective Survival Data

Publication Abstract

Hudomiet, Péter, and Robert Willis. 2013. "Estimating Second Order Probability Beliefs from Subjective Survival Data." Decision Analysis, 10(2): 152-170.

Based on subjective survival probability questions in the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), we use an econometric model to estimate the determinants of individual-level uncertainty about personal longevity. This model is built around the modal response hypothesis (MRH), a mathematical expression of the idea that survey responses of 0%, 50%, or 100% to probability questions indicate a high level of uncertainty about the relevant probability. We show that subjective survival expectations in 2002 line up very well with realized mortality of the HRS respondents between 2002 and 2010. We show that the MRH model performs better than typically used models in the literature of subjective probabilities. Our model gives more accurate estimates of low probability events and it is able to predict the unusually high fraction of focal 0%, 50%, and 100% answers observed in many data sets on subjective probabilities. We show that subjects place too much weight on parents' age at death when forming expectations about their own longevity, whereas other covariates such as demographics, cognition, personality, subjective health, and health behavior are underweighted. We also find that less educated people, smokers, and women have less certain beliefs, and recent health shocks increase uncertainty about survival, too.

DOI:10.1287/deca.2013.0266 (Full Text)

PMCID: PMC3882032. (Pub Med Central)

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next