Does provide additional categorical information generate negative utility?

Last registered on August 10, 2023


Trial Information

General Information

Does provide additional categorical information generate negative utility?
Initial registration date
August 04, 2023

Initial registration date is when the trial was registered.

It corresponds to when the registration was submitted to the Registry to be reviewed for publication.

First published
August 10, 2023, 1:27 PM EDT

First published corresponds to when the trial was first made public on the Registry after being reviewed.


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Primary Investigator

Wichita State University

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
University of Guelph

Additional Trial Information

In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial is based on or builds upon one or more prior RCTs.
This project investigates whether providing additional categorical information generates negative or positive utility for consumers or people in general. The authors plan to survey the data and content of a few existing studies to understand this research question. Specially, we compare the behavior when the different labels are provided versus when no label is provided.

The (dis)utility people perceive when additional information is provided is of interest to policymakers, product managers, grocery stores, and the scientific community. For example, if people would rather not know whether a product is locally produced or not, this provides strong policy implications. This study precisely investigates the labeling disutility in various environments.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Li, Tongzhe and Siyu Wang. 2023. "Does provide additional categorical information generate negative utility? ." AEA RCT Registry. August 10.
Experimental Details


The authors will visit the datasets from the projects and compare the behavior when various labeling of products or categories are provided to when the labeling was not provided.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Participant's amount of offer in various experimental treatments and contexts
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
This study utilizes a combination of unique datasets collected from field experiments. For example, we would like to explore participant's offers for a set of homogeneous commodities with different labeling. On average, we expect that individuals have a lower WTP for goods with labels compared to goods without labels. Our hypothesis is based on the idea that this discrepancy is a result of the disutility derived from categorization. Although individuals may desire to purchase certain products to uphold a positive social image, they are reluctant to bear the associated costs. Therefore, the scenario is more user-friendly when products are presented without labels.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization done by computer in the field.
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
50+ individuals in each treatment
Sample size: planned number of observations
1000+ individuals
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
50+ individuals
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
University of Windsor
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Analysis Plan

There is information in this trial unavailable to the public. Use the button below to request access.

Request Information