Willingness to pay for working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic

Last registered on May 25, 2021


Trial Information

General Information

Willingness to pay for working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic
Initial registration date
May 24, 2021
Last updated
May 25, 2021, 4:23 PM EDT



Primary Investigator

Institute for Structural Research

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
Institute for Structural Research, Institute of Labour Economics
PI Affiliation
Institute for Structural Research, University of Warsaw
PI Affiliation
Institute for Structural Research

Additional Trial Information

In development
Start date
End date
Secondary IDs
Non-pharmaceutical interventions, such as social distancing, limits on economic activity and the mobility of people, have been introduced as necessary responses to the COVID-19. Workplace interactions are the main source of social contacts of people in the working-age, and constitute an important transmission channel that can drive the spread of the COVID-19. Not all jobs and workers are the same though. Some occupations require more frequent social contacts, higher physical proximity, or even direct contact with infections at work. This makes some workers more exposed to contagion. The ability to work from home emerged as a key job amenity that reduces work-related exposure to contagion, and allows continuing paid work despite the introduction on NPIs. The sudden shift to working from home may change workers’ and firms’ preferences towards working in the office, commuting, working from home, and combining work with care, also in the longer term. It is, therefore, crucial to investigate how work organisation and work behaviour could or should change during and in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The aim of our project is to assess workers’ preferences to work from home, and to evaluate to what extent these preferences depend on occupational exposure to contagion, to what extent on individual and household characteristics. To this aim, we will conduct a discrete choice experiment to estimate workers’ willingness to pay for a job amenity of working from home. It will be combined with a randomized information provision intervention based on informing workers about occupational exposure to contagion. The project will contribute to the understanding of social behavior, especially regarding organization of work and work-related transmission risk, during a pandemic and its aftermath.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Lewandowski, Piotr et al. 2021. "Willingness to pay for working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic." AEA RCT Registry. May 25. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.7373-1.0
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Experimental Details


Discrete choice experiment - respondents will choose between hypothetical jobs which will differ in terms of wages and the possibility to work from home. It will be combined with an information provision experiment - a randomly selected sample of participants will obtain additional information about the level of exposure to COVID-19 in their occupation, in order to analyze whether knowledge on work-related exposure to contagion affects preferences towards working from home.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Willingness to pay (WTP) for working from home
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
The study will be based on the internet survey (CAWI). In the first part of the survey, we will collect basic sociodemographic information about the participants and their occupation. In the second part, participants will complete five choice tasks (paired profiles vignettes) between two hypothetical job offers in their occupation. The displayed job offers will differ in terms of wages and the possibility to work from home. Moreover, a randomly selected group of participants (treatment group) will obtain additional information about the exposure to contagion in their occupation.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Random allocation to the treatment and control group according to the day of birth. Odd day - treatment group; even day - control group.
Randomization Unit
Was the treatment clustered?

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
No clusters planned.
Sample size: planned number of observations
8 500 individuals in Poland: - age: 20-64. - place of residence: cities of 100 000 inhabitants or more and regions within 45 minutes commute distance to these cities, - labour market status: working population and unemployed individuals (jobseekers), - occupation: group 1-5 of the International Standard Classification of Occupation (excluding health sector workers).
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
8 500 individuals will be randomly allocated to the treatment and control group.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
The minimum detectable effect size for the main outcome (the difference in WTP for working from home between TG and TC) app. EUR 36 (alfa=0.5, beta=.01).

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
Rector's Committee for Ethics of Research with Human Participants, University of Warsaw
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number