Measuring willingness to pay for reliable electricity: Evidence from Senegal

Joshua W. Deutschmann, Agnieszka Postepska, Leopold Sarr

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Abstract

Low-quality electricity service constitutes a significant obstacle in achieving sustainable development. Governments in low-income countries and donors are increasingly seeking to invest in improving electricity service quality and reliability. Understanding households' and firms' willingness to pay (WTP) for quality improvements is key to designing investments in the electricity sector. In this paper, we provide new evidence on WTP for service quality improvements from a nationally-representative survey in Senegal. We find that households and firms are willing to pay a premium over current tariffs for high-quality electricity service without outages. However, WTP for marginal service improvements is significantly lower than WTP for uninterrupted service, suggesting that, for households and firms, any increase in electricity tariff must be accompanied by substantial quality improvements. We discuss the multi-round bidding game built in our data to emphasize the importance of design choices in eliciting the WTP and draw some policy implications.
Original languageEnglish
Article number105209
Number of pages16
JournalWorld Development
Volume138
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb-2021

Keywords

  • Willingness to pay
  • Contingent valuation
  • DCm
  • Unique valuation assumption
  • CONTINGENT-VALUATION
  • DICHOTOMOUS CHOICE
  • RURAL ELECTRIFICATION
  • DEVELOPING-COUNTRIES
  • SANITATION SERVICES
  • ENERGY EVIDENCE
  • POWER OUTAGES
  • WATER
  • QUALITY
  • HOUSEHOLDS

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