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Workshop: Economic Valuation of Mortality Risk Reduction: Assessing the State of the Art for Policy Applications (2002)

Paper Number: EE-0464

Document Date: 02/01/2002

Author(s):  Abt Associates

Subject Area(s):

Economic Analysis, Benefit-Cost Analysis, Human Health Valuation, Mortality Risk Valuation

Keywords: Economic Analysis, Benefit-Cost Analysis, Human Health Valuation, Mortality Risk Valuation


The purpose of the Environmental Policy and Economics Workshop Series is to hold in-depth workshops on timely topics that will further the use of economics as a tool for environmental decision making. Both NSF/EPA grant recipients and researchers (from EPA, fellow Federal agencies, academia, and others) will be invited to attend and discuss their on-going research. Topics will be chosen based on relevance to current EPA issues and, more broadly, to issues of concern to the environmental economics community. These topics include exploration of innovations in economic research methods as well as how research will further environmental policy making and future environmental economic studies.

This two-day workshop, co-sponsored by EPA's National Center for Environmental Economics and National Center for Environmental Research, was dedicated to exploring methods for valuing mortality risk reductions. Therer were six sessions in total.


Introductory Remarks of Tom Gibson, Associate Administrator, Office of Policy, USEPA

Session I: A Review of Current Approaches To Valuing Mortality Risks

  • The Use of Mortality Risk Reduction Valuation Estimates at EPA, by Brett Snyder, US EPA National Cent er for Environmental Economics
  • Some Problems in the Identification of the Price of Risk, by Dan A. Black, Seg Eun Choi, and Rebecca Walker, Syracuse University. Presented by Dan A. Black
  • Willingness to Pay for Mortality Risk Reductions: The Robustness of VSL Figures from Contingent Valuation Studies, by Anna Alberini, University of Maryland
  • Self Protection and Averting Behavior, Values of Statistical Lives, and Benefit Cost Analysis of Environmental Policy, by Glenn C. Blomquist, University of Kentucky
  • Discussion of Session I by Bryan Hubbell, US EPA Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards
  • Discussion of Session I by Ted R. Miller, Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation
  • Question and Answer Period for Session I

Session II: Panel Discussion: International Perspectives on Valuing Mortality Risk for Policy

  • Value of Statistical Life in Europe, by Matti Vainio and Stephen White, Environment Directorate General, European Commission. Presented by Matti Vainio
  • International Perspectives on Valuing Mortality Risk for Policy: A Canadian Perspective, by Paul De Civita, Health Canada
  • UK Perspective on Valuing Mortality Risk in the Air Pollution Context, by Helen Dunn, UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
  • Question and Answer Period for Session II

Session III: The Search for Improved Mortality Risk Estimates for Use in Policy Analyses

  • An Empirical Bayes Approach to Combining Estimates of the Value of a Statistical Life for Environmental Policy Analysis, by Ikohu Kochi and Randall Kramer, Duke University, and Bryan Hubbell, US EPA. Presented by Ikohu Kochi
  • Willingness to Pay for Reductions in Fatal Risk: A Meta-Analysis of the Value of Statistical Life Literature, by Christopher G. Leggett, James E. Neumann, and Pratap R. Penumalli, Industrial Economics, Inc. Presented by James Neumann
  • Discussion of Session III by David Widawsky, US EPA Office of Pesticide Programs
  • Discussion of Session III by F. Reed Johnson, Research Triangle Institute
  • Question and Answer Period for Session III

Session IV:  Risk Characteristics

  • Preferences for Environmental Outcomes: Consistent with Discounting Models or Not? By L. Robin Keller, University of California, Irvine, Jeffery L. Guyse, and Thomas Eppel: -- Summarization. Presented by L. Robin Keller
  • Multiple Discount Rates: the Influence of Decision Context on Choices over Time, by Robin Gregory, Decision Research, Jack Knetsch, Simon Fraser University, Joe Arvai, Ohio State University, and Katie Burns, University of Oregon. Presented by Robin Gregory
  • Parents’ Valuation of Latent Health Risks to Their Children, by Mark Dickie and Shelby Gerking, University of Central Florida. Presented by Mark Dickie
  • Implications of Risk and Population Characteristics for the VSL: Results From Canadian and US Samples, by Alan Krupnick, Resources for the Future, Anna Alberini, University of Maryland, Maureen Cropper, World Bank and University of Maryland, and Nathalie Simon, US EPA: -- Summarization. Presented by Alan Krupnick
  • Discussion of Session IV by Chris Dockins, US EPA
  • Discussion of Session IV by Ted Gayer, Georgetown University
  • Question and Answer Period for Session IV

Session V:  Population Characteristics

  • Do the Near Elderly Value Mortality Risks Differently? By V. Kerry Smith, North Carolina State University, Hyun Kim, and Donald H. Taylor Jr.:-- Summarization. Presented by V. Kerry Smith
  • Age and the Valuation of Risk Reduction: An Examination of Spending on Bicycle Safety Helmets, by Robin Jenkins, Nicole Owens, and Lanelle Bembenek Wiggins, US EPA, National Center for Environmental Economics. Presented by Robin Jenkins
  • Smoking Parents’ Valuations of Own and Children’s Health, by Mark D. Agee, The Pennsylvania State University, and Thomas D. Crocker, University of Wyoming. Presented by Thomas D. Crocker
  • What Do Organic Baby Food Purchases Tell Us About Parental Values for Reductions in Risks to Children’s Health? By Kelly B. Maguire, Nicole Owens, and Nathalie Simon, National Center for Environmental Economics, US EPA. Presented by Nicole Owens
  • Discussion of Session V by Nishkam Agarwal, US EPA, Office of Pollution, Prevention, and Toxics
  • Discussion of Session V by Carol Mansfield, RTI International
  • Question and Answer Period for Session V

Session VI: Research Frontiers

  • Understanding Individual Preference for Reductions in Morbidity - Mortality Events, by J.R. DeShazo and Trudy Ann Cameron, UCLA -- Summarization. Presented by J.R. DeShazo
  • Extending the Reference Lottery Approach for Valuing Fatal Cancer Risks: A Brief Summary of On-going Research, by George Van Houtven, Research Triangle Institute, and Chris Dockins and Melonie Williams, US EPA. Presented by George Van Houtven
  • Eliciting Individual Beliefs About Mortality Risks, by Glenn W. Harrison and Elisabet Rutström, University of South Carolina. Presented by Glenn W. Harrison
  • Question and Answer Period for Session VI

This workshop is part of the Environmental Policy and Economics Workshop Series.

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