Priming Human-Computer Interactions: Experimental Evidence from Economic Development Mobile Surveys
29 Pages Posted: 27 Apr 2017 Last revised: 22 Jun 2017
Date Written: April 25, 2017
This paper investigates how citizens from developing countries vocalize controversial topics, combining the behavioral economics of development with human-computer interaction for potentially mutual benefit across fields. I examine a priming effort to understand how people decide to discuss controversial local subjects, using the human-computer interaction of people with their mobile phones to quantify how attracted people feel to alternative local political economy topics when randomly asked what they think about international aid. The treatment significantly impacted the likelihood of choosing to discuss sanitation, health, poverty, democracy, individual determination, pro-poor support, and happiness. However, the intervention does not affect subjectively ranked preferences. The proposed approach quantifies the attraction users feel to concepts based on human-computer interactions and this approach may be relevant for contexts beyond developing countries. Human-computer interaction approaches may help policy makers entrusted with the Sustainable Development Goals and other initiatives better understand the needs and desires of people in developing countries.
Keywords: political economy of development, preferences, mobile surveys, experiments
JEL Classification: C83, D63, D72, I3
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation