Measuring Subgroup Preferences in Conjoint Experiments
Thomas J. Leeper,
Sara B. Hobolt and
Political Analysis, 2020, vol. 28, issue 2, 207-221
Conjoint analysis is a common tool for studying political preferences. The method disentangles patterns in respondentsâ€™ favorability toward complex, multidimensional objects, such as candidates or policies. Most conjoints rely upon a fully randomized design to generate average marginal component effects (AMCEs). They measure the degree to which a given value of a conjoint profile feature increases, or decreases, respondentsâ€™ support for the overall profile relative to a baseline, averaging across all respondents and other features. While the AMCE has a clear causal interpretation (about the effect of features), most published conjoint analyses also use AMCEs to describe levels of favorability. This often means comparing AMCEs among respondent subgroups. We show that using conditional AMCEs to describe the degree of subgroup agreement can be misleading as regression interactions are sensitive to the reference category used in the analysis. This leads to inferences about subgroup differences in preferences that have arbitrary sign, size, and significance. We demonstrate the problem using examples drawn from published articles and provide suggestions for improved reporting and interpretation using marginal means and an omnibus F-test. Given the accelerating use of these designs in political science, we offer advice for best practice in analysis and presentation of results.
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: Track citations by RSS feed
Downloads: (external link)
https://www.cambridge.org/core/product/identifier/ ... type/journal_article link to article abstract page (text/html)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:cup:polals:v:28:y:2020:i:2:p:207-221_4
Access Statistics for this article
More articles in Political Analysis from Cambridge University Press Cambridge University Press, UPH, Shaftesbury Road, Cambridge CB2 8BS UK.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Keith Waters ().