Selection on Welfare Gains: Experimental Evidence from Electricity Plan Choice

Last registered on January 25, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Selection on Welfare Gains: Experimental Evidence from Electricity Plan Choice
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0007083
Initial registration date
January 24, 2021

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
January 25, 2021, 10:12 AM EST

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

Locations

Region

Primary Investigator

Affiliation
University of Chicago, Harris School of Public Policy

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies
PI Affiliation
Kyoto University

Additional Trial Information

Status
Completed
Start date
2012-01-01
End date
2015-03-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
We study a problem in which policymakers need to screen self-selected individuals by unobserved heterogeneity in social welfare gains from a policy intervention. In our framework, the marginal treatment effects and marginal treatment responses arise as key statistics to characterize social welfare. We apply this framework to a randomized field experiment on electricity plan choice. Consumers were offered socially efficient dynamic pricing with randomly assigned take-up incentives. We find that price-elastic consumers—who generate larger welfare gains—are more likely to self-select. Our counterfactual simulations quantify the optimal take-up incentives, exploiting observed and unobserved heterogeneity in selection and welfare gains.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Ito, Takanori, Koichiro Ito and Makoto Tanaka. 2021. "Selection on Welfare Gains: Experimental Evidence from Electricity Plan Choice." AEA RCT Registry. January 25. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7083
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Participating households were eligible to adopt dynamic electricity pricing. In addition, a financial take-up incentive was randomly assigned.
Intervention Start Date
2014-06-01
Intervention End Date
2015-03-31

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Hourly electricity consumption at the household level
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Participating households were eligible to adopt dynamic electricity pricing. In addition, a financial take-up incentive was randomly assigned.
Experimental Design Details
Participating households were eligible to adopt dynamic electricity pricing. In addition, a financial take-up incentive was randomly assigned.
Randomization Method
Randomization done by a computer
Randomization Unit
Household
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
No clusters
Sample size: planned number of observations
970 households
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
468 (baseline) and 502 (treatment)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number

Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
Data Collection Complete
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?
No

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Reports & Other Materials