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Theses

Four Essays on the Economics of Road Risks in India

Abstract : My dissertation aims at understanding the environmental and behavioral determinants of road traffic accidents in a developing country, India. To do so, a panel database on Indian states over a period going from 1996 to 2006 has been built. A household survey among drivers and passengers of motorbikes has been also implemented in Delhi in 2011, this to overcome the absence of individual data on road habits. Chapter 1 is a macroeconomic study on the Indian subcontinent. The results found suggest that India should invest more particularly in road infrastructures, in the strict implementation of road rules and in education programs on road related risks. Given that 70% of motorized vehicles are two-wheelers in India, I decided to focus the rest of my analysis on this subgroup. Chapter 2 provides a presentation of the survey. I study in Chapter 3 the adequate measurement of risk aversion in the context of a developing country. I explore the impact of questions and interviewers on the elicited individuals’ preferences towards risk. In Chapter 4, a theoretical model on the influence of risk aversion on prevention activities is first adapted to the road safety context. When looking at the data, we found thatmore risk averse drivers aremore likely to wear a helmet while there is no significant effect on choice of speed. As for passengers, they seem to adapt their helmet use to their environment and in particular to their driver’s skills. In Chapter 5, I show that previous experiences of road crash and police stop impact subjective expectations. Fear of injuries lead to a greater use of helmet on long distance journeys, while police threat rather determines the helmet use on short trips.
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Carole Treibich. Four Essays on the Economics of Road Risks in India. Economics and Finance. École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales; Erasmus University, Rotterdam, 2014. English. ⟨tel-02474075⟩

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