Tag Archives: mcfadden

first reference to discrete choice in health

Just a short update today.

Via Twitter I learned that Professor Philip Clarke (University of Melbourne) gave a great seminar at the Office of Health Economics. His topic was history of economic evaluation in health generally but there was a particular gem in there of interest to me.

It appears we are all wrong. The first time Thurstone’s method of paired comparisons was proposed as a possible way of valuing health states was in 1970! On page 1041 of A health-status index and its application to health-services outcomes. Fanshel S & Bush JW. Operations Research, 18(6): 1021-1066.

We stand corrected, thank you.

PS Thurstone did pairs only because the multinomial model wasn’t available then, only probit (normal based) distributions, which don’t have closed form for 3+ options. So if you want the general (non-health) first reference to the multinomial (conditional) logit, it’s McFadden’s article or, if you’d like the earlier non-economics one, go read and reference Luce and Marley’s books from the 1950s and 1960s. Plus if you want to reference DCEs and why they are better than looking at all pairs – i.e. the addition of experimental design to choice models – it’s Louviere and Hensher’s work in the early 1980s.

EDIT at 11:40 BST to correct OHE’s name.