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Valuing Changes in Time Use in Low- and Middle-Income Countries

  • Dale Whittington (a1) (a2) and Joseph Cook (a3)
Abstract

Valuing changes in time use is often a critical element of economic analyses of development projects. In this paper we review the literature on the monetary value of time in low- and middle-income countries and find support for a commonly used benchmark of 50% of after-tax wages for time changes in activities in the informal sector, such as collecting water or traveling to health clinics. We offer recommendations to analysts who are conducting benefit-cost analyses in these settings about what methods they can use to estimate the value of time. These include a benefits transfer approach and also a relatively simple stated preference approach that might be deployed in a specific context if the project recommendation is sensitive to the assumption of the value of time or if the distribution of the benefits of time savings is especially important.

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Copyright
This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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References
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Journal of Benefit-Cost Analysis
  • ISSN: 2194-5888
  • EISSN: 2152-2812
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