Caroline's research set out to understand how the communication of risk in a discrete choice experiment (DCE) affects respondents’ decision-making heuristics and strategies.
An on-line pilot DCE was designed to understand the preferences of a sample of female members of the public (recruited by posters in local cafes) for a breast screening programme described by two risk attributes (probability of detecting a cancer and risk of unnecessary treatment) and an out-of-pocket cost attribute, each with four levels.
She found that In total, 35 female members of the public completed the DCE, with fifteen respondents completing the eye-tracking experiment. Respondents gave significantly more visual attention, suggesting information processing, to both risk attributes when risk was communicated with an icon array compared with using a percentage to present the risk.
This pilot study demonstrates that eye-tracking can be used as a method to further understand the responses to a DCE and highlights the impact that risk attribute framing can have on respondents’ decision-making heuristics and strategies.