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The backfiring effects of monetary and gift incentives on Covid-19 vaccination willingness

Xinrui Zhang and Tom Lane ()
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Xinrui Zhang: University of Nottingham Ningbo China

No 2022-14, Discussion Papers from The Centre for Decision Research and Experimental Economics, School of Economics, University of Nottingham

Abstract: Policies offering material incentives for Covid-19 vaccination have been widely used around the world as countries pursue the pressing objective of boosting immunity. This paper reports an experiment in China aimed at testing the effects of such interventions on vaccination willingness. We provide the first Covid-19 vaccine study to separately consider and directly compare the effects of both monetary and gift-based incentives, both of which have been commonly employed in practice. Results from a sample of 1,365 individuals suggest that incentives in the range of 8-125 USD backfire, inducing lower vaccination willingness than simply offering vaccines for free. The effects of money and gifts of equivalent value do not significantly differ. We compare our results against the burgeoning literature on Covid-19 vaccine incentives, and demonstrate that the negative effects we identify are stronger than those observed to date in other populations.

Keywords: Covid-19; Vaccine willingness; Incentives (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-cbe, nep-cna, nep-exp and nep-hea
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