Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment

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Abstract

We present the results of a survey-experiment using a representative sample of the Dutch population in which we relate respondents' opinion about the tax deductibility of mortgages to their estimates about other people's opinion.The experiment employs three treatment variables: monetary incentives, the provision of arguments pro and contra, and ambiguity of the question posed.We find that respondents are characterized by a significant consensus effect.Respondents estimates of others opinions are strongly related to their own opinion.The size of the effect, however, is not affected by ambiguity of the question posed. Information by means of the provision of arguments pro and contra the tax provision does reduce the consensus effect significantly, though.Monetary incentives appear to have only a weak effect.We also find a strong effect of house ownership.Not only are house owners more in favor of the tax provision, they are also characterized by a significantly stronger consensus effect.These results suggest that both cognitive factors and motivational factors are responsible for the consensus effect.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationTilburg
PublisherMicroeconomics
Number of pages25
Volume2004-23
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Publication series

NameCentER Discussion Paper
Volume2004-23

Fingerprint

deduction
taxes
experiment
incentive
cognitive factors

Keywords

  • consensus effect
  • experiment
  • survey
  • taxation

Cite this

van der Heijden, E. C. M., Nelissen, J. H. M., & Potters, J. J. M. (2004). Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2004-23). Tilburg: Microeconomics.
van der Heijden, E.C.M. ; Nelissen, J.H.M. ; Potters, J.J.M. / Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment. Tilburg : Microeconomics, 2004. (CentER Discussion Paper).
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abstract = "We present the results of a survey-experiment using a representative sample of the Dutch population in which we relate respondents' opinion about the tax deductibility of mortgages to their estimates about other people's opinion.The experiment employs three treatment variables: monetary incentives, the provision of arguments pro and contra, and ambiguity of the question posed.We find that respondents are characterized by a significant consensus effect.Respondents estimates of others opinions are strongly related to their own opinion.The size of the effect, however, is not affected by ambiguity of the question posed. Information by means of the provision of arguments pro and contra the tax provision does reduce the consensus effect significantly, though.Monetary incentives appear to have only a weak effect.We also find a strong effect of house ownership.Not only are house owners more in favor of the tax provision, they are also characterized by a significantly stronger consensus effect.These results suggest that both cognitive factors and motivational factors are responsible for the consensus effect.",
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series = "CentER Discussion Paper",
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van der Heijden, ECM, Nelissen, JHM & Potters, JJM 2004 'Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment' CentER Discussion Paper, vol. 2004-23, Microeconomics, Tilburg.

Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment. / van der Heijden, E.C.M.; Nelissen, J.H.M.; Potters, J.J.M.

Tilburg : Microeconomics, 2004. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2004-23).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

TY - UNPB

T1 - Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment

AU - van der Heijden, E.C.M.

AU - Nelissen, J.H.M.

AU - Potters, J.J.M.

N1 - Pagination: 25

PY - 2004

Y1 - 2004

N2 - We present the results of a survey-experiment using a representative sample of the Dutch population in which we relate respondents' opinion about the tax deductibility of mortgages to their estimates about other people's opinion.The experiment employs three treatment variables: monetary incentives, the provision of arguments pro and contra, and ambiguity of the question posed.We find that respondents are characterized by a significant consensus effect.Respondents estimates of others opinions are strongly related to their own opinion.The size of the effect, however, is not affected by ambiguity of the question posed. Information by means of the provision of arguments pro and contra the tax provision does reduce the consensus effect significantly, though.Monetary incentives appear to have only a weak effect.We also find a strong effect of house ownership.Not only are house owners more in favor of the tax provision, they are also characterized by a significantly stronger consensus effect.These results suggest that both cognitive factors and motivational factors are responsible for the consensus effect.

AB - We present the results of a survey-experiment using a representative sample of the Dutch population in which we relate respondents' opinion about the tax deductibility of mortgages to their estimates about other people's opinion.The experiment employs three treatment variables: monetary incentives, the provision of arguments pro and contra, and ambiguity of the question posed.We find that respondents are characterized by a significant consensus effect.Respondents estimates of others opinions are strongly related to their own opinion.The size of the effect, however, is not affected by ambiguity of the question posed. Information by means of the provision of arguments pro and contra the tax provision does reduce the consensus effect significantly, though.Monetary incentives appear to have only a weak effect.We also find a strong effect of house ownership.Not only are house owners more in favor of the tax provision, they are also characterized by a significantly stronger consensus effect.These results suggest that both cognitive factors and motivational factors are responsible for the consensus effect.

KW - consensus effect

KW - experiment

KW - survey

KW - taxation

M3 - Discussion paper

VL - 2004-23

T3 - CentER Discussion Paper

BT - Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment

PB - Microeconomics

CY - Tilburg

ER -

van der Heijden ECM, Nelissen JHM, Potters JJM. Opinions on Tax Deductions and the Consensus Effect in a Survey-Experiment. Tilburg: Microeconomics. 2004. (CentER Discussion Paper).