Joffre Swait

Joffre Swait
Erasmus University Rotterdam | EUR · Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management, Erasmus Choice Modelling Center

PhD Transportation Systems Analysis (MIT)
Research in health-related choice, goal-driven choice, neighborhood/school choice.

About

141
Publications
74,949
Reads
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Introduction
My research focuses on human choice behaviour, particularly the econometric modelling of both decision processes and outcomes. I am currently very interested in modelling Antecedent Volition in choice processes, such as goal-driven choices, choice set formation, decision strategy selection, etc. Application areas include principally health, environment, transportation, and marketing.
Additional affiliations
January 2019 - March 2020
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Position
  • Professor
Description
  • Associated with the Erasmus Choice Modelling Centre (ECMC)
March 2014 - June 2018
University of South Australia
Position
  • Managing Director
September 2011 - February 2014
University of Technology Sydney
Position
  • Professor
Education
September 1980 - June 1984
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Field of study
  • Transportation Systems
September 1975 - June 1976
Oregon State University
Field of study
  • Civil Engineering
September 1971 - June 1975
Oregon State University
Field of study
  • Civil Engineering

Publications

Publications (141)
Article
Goals are constructs that direct choice behavior by guiding a decision maker towards desirable (or away from undesirable) end-states. Oftentimes, consumers are motivated to satisfy multiple goals within a single choice. While recognizing this possibility, the literature has not directly formulated models of choice as a multi-goal problem. We develo...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, we analyze the implications for the economic valuation of the provision of public goods, considering respondents’ perceptions of the institution(s) that provide the service. The specific behavioral mechanism whereby institutional distrust (ID) shows itself is through the activation of screening of choice options (choice set formation...
Article
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is an ambitious Australian welfare program, with the goal of supporting 460,000 people living with a disability. To promote individual choices, the NDIS allocates personalised budgets based on the goals of Participants (or their nominated Carers). This paper examines (a) the heterogeneity of personal...
Article
Full-text available
From a practical perspective, (arguably) most consumer decisions are not made in isolation of the households in which consumers are inserted, yet we commonly treat them econometrically as if they were. The purpose of this workshop was to take some initial steps in defining needed research in household decision making that structurally accounts for...
Article
Full-text available
We propose as a practice that researchers investigate other sources of heterogeneity besides taste variation in the search for parsimonious recommendations about new product development and marketing program design. Some evidence exists that regularities in choice processes may be more common than previously thought (Louviere and Swait, 1996, Louvi...
Article
Workforce participation decisions involve multiple stages: search, screening and offer evaluation. Standard econometric practice focusses on these stages in isolation. We conceptualize the focal behaviours as separate sequential decision stages, and provide a stated preference measurement framework for online job search and choice with a behavioura...
Article
Objectives: Decisions about health often involve risk, and different decision makers interpret and value risk information differently. Furthermore, an individual's attitude toward health-specific risks can contribute to variation in health preferences and behavior. This study aimed to determine whether and how health-risk attitude and heterogeneit...
Article
Full-text available
Brands develop strategies based on forecasts that allow for individual differences, usually attributed empirically to heterogeneity in consumers’ preferences. Behavioral theories propose choice process heterogeneity as the conditioning stage for choice outcomes, and suggest that not accounting for it causes biases in parameters and policy measures....
Article
Objectives This study aimed to demonstrate the econometric modeling of benefit/risk-based choice set formation (CSF) within health-related discrete choice experiments. Methods In 4 different case studies, first, a trade-off model was fitted; building on this, a screening model was fitted; and finally, a full CSF model was estimated. This final mod...
Article
Conciliating nature conservation and tourism development is an increasingly important task for authorities in charge of managing protected areas and requires an adequate knowledge of visitors′ preferences and recreational behavior. In this light, we used data collected by means of a choice experiment to investigate recreational preferences at Dolom...
Article
Preference heterogeneity is one of the central behavioral concepts in applied econometrics. Its centrality is particularly evident in the choice modeling literature, notably in its widespread application to environmental and health economics, marketing, and transport. Despite conceptual and empirical advances in modeling preference heterogeneity, t...
Article
Previous choice studies have proposed a way to condition the utility of each alternative in a choice set on experience with the alternatives accumulated over previous periods, defined either as a mode used or not in a most recent trip, or the mode chosen in their most recent trip and the number of similar one-way trips made during the last week. Th...
Article
Previous economics literature has explored the role of visual attention on choice in isolation without accounting for other influences such as habits and goals or learning effects, nor their interrelationship. In this paper, we: (i) develop a novel joint framework to explore the relationship between visual attention, observed heterogeneity from sta...
Article
This paper aims to explicitly account for the impact of inertia (or habit) on departure time decisions, and explore (1) to what extent departure time is influenced by inertia, (2) what influences individuals’ inertia with respect to departure time decisions, and (3) to what extent it impacts transport policies. We estimate an integrated choice and...
Article
Full-text available
The estimation of choice models that explicitly incorporate economic agents’ goal-related information has yet to receive focused attention from practitioners. Despite recent advances on spatial analysis in stated preference studies, there is still no evidence on how spatial effects interact with goal pursuit. In this study we propose a modelling fr...
Preprint
Full-text available
In this paper, we analyze the implications for the economic valuation of the provision of public goods, considering respondents' perceptions of the institution(s) that provide the service. The specific behavioral mechanism whereby institutional distrust (ID) shows itself is through the activation of screening of choice options (choice set formation...
Article
Full-text available
Several discrete choice experiment studies have investigated issues in the design of incentive programs to enhance the provision of ecosystem services. In these studies, ownership of land is usually private, and landowners make decisions independently of each other. However, the assumption of independence may be invalid when decision making involve...
Article
Full-text available
Lack of evidence about the external validity of Discrete Choice Experiments (DCEs)-sourced preferences inhibits greater use of DCEs in healthcare decision-making. This study examines the external validity of such preferences, unravels its determinants, and provides evidence of whether healthcare choice is predictable. We focused on influenza vaccin...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Lack of evidence about the external validity of discrete choice experiments (DCEs) is one of the barriers that inhibit greater use of DCEs in healthcare decision making. Objectives: To determine whether the number of alternatives in a DCE choice task should reflect the actual decision context, and how complex the choice model needs t...
Article
Using discrete choice modelling, the study investigates 946 American consumers’ willingness-to-pay and preferences for diverse beef products. A novel experiment was used to elicit the number of beef products that each consumer would purchase. The range of products explored in this study included ground, diced, roast, and six cuts of steaks (sirloin...
Article
This paper considers decision contexts wherein consumers make choices among alternatives that contain a manifest feature-based attribute: i.e., a discrete, salient and important attribute that describes a dichotomous quality, such as “genetically modified” “organic” or “locally grown”. We propose a choice model that can explicitly account for a) pe...
Article
We develop and estimate a statistical model of neighborhood choice that draws on insights from cognitive science and decision theory, as well as qualitative studies of housing search. The model allows for a sequential decision process and the possibility that people only consider a small and selective subset of all potential destinations. When comb...
Preprint
Using discrete choice modelling, the study investigates 946 American consumers willingness-to-pay and preferences for diverse beef products. A novel experiment was used to elicit the number of beef products that each consumer would purchase. The range of products explored in this study included ground, diced, roast, and six cuts of steaks (sirloin,...
Preprint
Coastal erosion is a global and pervasive phenomenon that predicates a need for a strategic approach to the future management of coastal values and assets (both built and natural), should we invest in protective structures like seawalls that aim to preserve specific coastal features, or allow natural coastline retreat to preserve sandy beaches and...
Article
This paper considers decision contexts wherein consumers make choices among alternatives that contain a feature-based attribute: i.e., a discrete attribute that describes a dichotomous quality such as “genetically modified”, “organic”, or “locally grown”. We propose a choice model that can explicitly account for a) perception bias with respect to s...
Article
Increased use of discrete choice experiments (DCEs) in healthcare requires establishing whether stated preferences are predictive of observed healthcare utilization. This study aimed to determine whether the number of alternatives in a DCE choice task should reflect the actual decision context, and how complex the choice model needs to be to predic...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Business South Australia, Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Business SA hereinafter) contracted this study to seek input from consumers about their attitudes to existing shop trading hour restrictions in both the regulated environment in Adelaide and the deregulated rural and regional towns. To meet these needs, the Institute for Choice (I4C) condu...
Article
Full-text available
This paper develops new directions on how individuals’ use of multiple goals can be incorporated in econometric models of individual decision making. We start by outlining key components of multiple, simultaneous goal pursuit and multi-stage choice. Since different goals are often only partially compatible, such a multiple goal-based approach impli...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: To improve information for patients and to facilitate a vaccination coverage that is in line with the EU and World Health Organization goals, we aimed to quantify how vaccination and patient characteristics impact on influenza vaccination uptake of elderly people. Methods: An online discrete choice experiment (DCE) was conducted amon...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Many consumers already demand to know where their food comes from and the path to their plate, but growing pressures on world food production – and therefore food safety – make these questions of increasing importance to everyone. The Pathways to Market industrial research hub aims to transform Australian food supply chains by integrating leading-e...
Article
Recent industry reports indicate that consumers own four digital devices on an average, and switching devices during shopping is the “new normal.” The addition of mobile Internet as a new channel of search and purchase has spurred the adoption of the digital medium, and easy accessibility of the Internet on multiple devices is influencing shopping...
Article
Full-text available
Goals direct decision making, from the most abstract levels of motivation to the multitudinous details of evaluation of options available for choice. However, the pervasive influence of goals in decision processes is generally not explicitly recognized at the level of demand model formulation and specification. In applied economics generally, and t...
Article
This paper contributes to our understanding of individual decision making by testing the proposal that differential weighting of 2 (or more) goals can be an important factor leading to stochastic (probabilistic) choice. The tested models follow from the endogenous maximum entropy program (eMEP) paradigm (Swait & Marley, 2013), which proposes that s...
Article
Full-text available
This paper develops new directions on how individuals’ use of multiple goals can be incorporated in econometric models of individual decision making. We start by outlining key components of multiple, simultaneous goal pursuit and multi-stage choice. Since different goals are often only partially compatible, such a multiple goal-based approach impli...
Article
INTRODUCTION Preference-based measures of health-related quality of life play a key role in the calculation of Quality-Adjusted Life Years (QALYs) for Health Technology Assessment (HTA). The Child Health Utility 9D (CHU9D) is a new preference-based instrument designed specifically for application in children and adolescents (aged 7 to 17 years). Th...
Article
Full-text available
Effective public expenditure currently dominates the management focus of many protected areas. This calls for explicit modelling of constraints and motivations that, respectively, obstruct and stimulate visits to selected outdoor destinations. Choice set formation is the result of screening and/or inclusion of specific sites (alternatives) to form...
Article
In contrast to the recent proliferation of studies incorporating ordinal methods to generate health state values from adults, to date relatively few studies have utilised ordinal methods to generate health state values from adolescents. This paper reports upon a study to apply profile case best worst scaling methods to derive a new adolescent speci...
Article
Full-text available
We offer a new conceptualization and operational model of consumer choice which allows context-sensitive information usage and preference heterogeneity to be separately and simultaneously captured, thus transforming the axiom of full information use into a testable hypothesis. A key contribution of the proposed framework is the integration of two p...
Article
Full-text available
The focus of this monograph is the information-economics theoretic framework of brand equity. Adopting this view, Erdem and Swait [1998] argue that consumer-based brand equity is the value of a brand as a credible signal of a product's positioning. In their framework, the content, clarity, and credibility of the brand signal creates intangible bene...
Article
Traditional stated choice (SC) experiments are the most widely used method for measuring individual preferences. Notwithstanding, the issue of differentiating between the impacts of the attributes per se vs. the impact of the attribute levels shown in the experiment has been something of a challenge for researchers. Recent studies suggest that Best...
Article
Random utility models have been widely employed in environmental valuation. But stochastic choice set formation models in the random utility framework are rarely applied in this literature, although previous research has shown that ignoring choice set formation (when it exists) leads to biased parameter estimates and welfare measures. This paper co...
Chapter
Full-text available
Given increasing survey costs, transferring model estimates obtained from one location and survey and applying them to another location is becoming increasingly appealing. The transfer of previously estimated model outputs to new application contexts has the potential to reduce the need for new large-scale data collection in the new application con...
Article
Full-text available
Traditional discrete choice experiments do not differentiate between the intrinsic importance of an attribute and that associated with its levels of variation. It has been suggested recently that best-worst (B-W) scaling (Case 2) allows for this differentiation. Here we pool B-W answers with binary stated choice (SC) data to study the importance of...
Article
Full-text available
The US auto industry experienced some turbulent times during the last decade, especially during the 2006–2011 period. The objective of this paper is twofold. First, we want to apply the information economics theoretic framework (e.g., Erdem and Swait (J Consum Psychol 7 (April): 131–157, 1998)) of brand equity and management to assess the impact of...
Article
Full-text available
External validity is a crucial but under-researched topic when considering using discrete choice experiment (DCE) results to inform decision making in clinical, commercial or policy contexts. We present the theory and tests traditionally used to explore external validity that focus on a comparison of final outcomes and review how this traditional d...
Article
Transportation system capacity and performance, urban form and socio-demographics define the influences and constraints conditioning the preferences of urban residents for different transport modes. Changes in characteristics of urban areas are likely to lead to changes in preferences for alternative modes of transport over time; as a consequence,...
Article
Full-text available
We propose and test a choice model based on the notion that the category an alternative is perceived to fall into determines the attribute importance weights used to evaluate that alternative. For example, space is more important than fuel economy for an SUV, but the opposite is true for a commuter car. In our model, the weights associated with dif...
Article
We conceptualize probabilistic choice as the result of the simultaneous pursuit of multiple goals in a vector optimization representation, which is reduced to a scalar optimization that implies goal balancing. The majority of prior theoretical and empirical work on such probabilistic choice is based on random utility models, the most basic of which...
Article
Given the large number of food choices that consumers make each day it seems likely that they will adopt decision strategies that minimize cognitive effort. To examine this issue, we develop a conceptual and empirical model of habitual choice, and the factors that result in transitions to two strategies other than habitual selection: utility-maximi...
Article
Full-text available
Health systems worldwide are grappling with the need to control costs to maintain system viability. With the combination of worsening economic conditions, an aging population and reductions in tax revenues, the pressures to make structural changes are expected to continue growing. Common cost control mechanisms, e.g. curtailment of patient access a...
Chapter
This article provides an overview of the methods employed in discrete choice models relevant to food demand analysis. Discrete analysis of food choices can be grouped into two main areas: analysis that focuses on the consumer to assess preferences and welfare, and analysis that focuses on assessing consumer behavior to provide marketing or sales st...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The usual dependent data available for choice modeling is simply the chosen alternative among some set of discrete objects M. Most applications estimate choice models assuming that all alternatives were evaluated and compared to obtain the final choice. Two-stage models of choice (Manski 1977), in contrast, assume that in a first stage the choice s...
Article
We discuss the Salisbury and Feinberg paper [Salisbury, L. C., F. M. Feinberg. 2010. Alleviating the constant stochastic variance assumption in decision research: Theory, measurement, and experimental test. Marketing Sci. 29(1) 1-17], setting their contribution in the historical context of the wider literature on the role of error variability in di...
Article
Given the large number of choices that consumers make each day it seems likely that they will generally adopt decision strategies that minimize cognitive effort, particularly with low price products such as most items found in a supermarket. One such strategy may be to simply choose what has been chosen in the past, i.e. to fall into a pattern of r...
Article
This paper introduces a variant of random utility choice models based on mixed probability density functions, hence the adopted moniker "k-Mix models." Mixed pdf's contain components with the usual continuous density function specifications that underlie common choice models (e.g. MNL, GEV, MNP), but also contain one or more discrete probability ma...
Article
Full-text available
We review the discussion at a workshop whose goal was to achieve a better integration among behavioral, economic, and statistical approaches to choice modeling. The workshop explored how current approaches to the specification, estimation, and application of choice models might be improved to better capture the diversity of processes that are postu...
Article
We examine a model of six latent constructs and propose that truebrand loyalty can be explained as a result of five distinct antecedents: brand credibility, affective brand conviction, cognitive brand conviction, attitude strength, and brand commitment. Data from experimental conditions with manipulations of eight product classes and two involvemen...
Article
Customer churn is an ever-growing issue in the relational services sector (e.g., retail banking, telecommunications), where business models ultimately depend upon long-term relationships with customers as the basis for profitability. Businesses in this sector have tended to view satisfaction and service quality as the key tools for increasing custo...
Chapter
Economists have traditionally relied on retrospective analysis of actual consumer behaviour to understand the factors affecting the decisions of economic agents. This type of information is termed revealed preference (RP) data. Suppose we want to understand health plan choice. Typically, researchers will try to find a data set where consumers were...
Chapter
The purpose of this chapter is to place conjoint analysis techniques within the broader framework of preference elicitation techniques that are consistent with the Random Utility Theory (RUT) paradigm. This allows us to accomplish the following objectives: explain how random utility theory provides a level playing field on which to compare preferen...
Article
This paper examines the effects of brand credibility, a central concept in information economics–based approaches to brand effects and brand equity, on consumer choice and choice set formation. We investigate the mechanisms through which credibility effects materialize, namely, through perceived quality, perceived risk, and information costs saved....
Article
When I first received this paper, I had a distinct impression of deja vu... then realized that I had been present in the same room with Dr. Layton and others during a short discussion about averaging predictions across multiple models (UC Berkeley Choice Symposium - Swait et al. 2002); this discussion apparently peaked his interest. And in due cour...
Article
This article tests how well the information economics view of brand equity explains consumer brand choice in countries that represent different cultural dimensions. In this empirical analysis, the authors use survey and experimental data on orange juice and personal computers collected from respondents in Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Spain, Turke...
Article
When shopping, consumers use a few key criteria to narrow their choices. Traditionally, it's been assumed that they don't violate these initial criteria or "cutoffs," but recent research suggests that they treat these constraints as soft, not hard. More significantly, cutoffs are a rich source of extra information on consumer choice, and can consid...
Article
This article tests how well the information economics view of brand equity explains consumer brand choice in countries that represent different cultural dimensions. In this empirical analysis, the authors use survey and experimental data on orange juice and personal computers collected from respondents in Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Spain, Turke...
Article
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Civil Engineering, 1984. MICROFICHE COPY AVAILABLE IN ARCHIVES AND ENGINEERING. Bibliography: leaves 205-211. by Joffre Dan Swait, Jr. Ph.D. http://hdl.handle.net/1721.1/15608