Contingent valuation is widely used due to its flexibility in valuing a wide variety of non-market goods. Although this method has important benefits, its validity and reliability are often criticised. This paper reviews the literature on the use of contingent valuation for measuring willingness to pay (WTP) for electricity generated from renewable energy sources (green electricity). A literature review, conducted on a sample of 51 peer-reviewed studies, shows that the vast majority of contingent evaluation studies stems from developed economies. Furthermore, most frequently used WTP elicitation techniques are open-ended and dichotomous choice approaches, which tend to produce varying levels of WTP. Studies dealing with the antecedents of WTP are predominantly inspired by the theory of reasoned action or by its extension, the theory of planned behaviour. This paper identifies five common errors in contingent valuation methods and discusses a number of remedies to deal with these errors in WTP research.
- Contingent valuation method; willingness to pay; green electricity; elicitation techniques