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The Social Costs of Civil Conflict: Evidence from Surveys of Happiness

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  • Heinz Welsch

Abstract

This paper uses data on stated subjective well-being to capture the intangible costs of civil conflict. By running cross-national regressions with happiness as the dependent variable, and the number of conflict victims and income as explanatory variables, it investigates if and in which way civil conflict affects happiness, and derives the implied monetary equivalent of the unhappiness caused. The paper finds that the number of conflict victims and their change over time significantly affect subjective well-being directly through health and psychic effects as well as indirectly through reduced income. The non-pecuniary effects are found to be larger than the income-related effect. A change over time in the number of victims has a stronger impact on well-being than the current number. There are sizeable monetary equivalents to these effects. Copyright 2008 The Authors.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Kyklos.

Volume (Year): 61 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2 (05)
Pages: 320-340

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Handle: RePEc:bla:kyklos:v:61:y:2008:i:2:p:320-340

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Cited by:
  1. Edsel Beja Jr., 2013. "Subjective Well-Being Approach to the Valuation of International Development: Evidence for the Millennium Development Goals," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 111(1), pages 141-159, March.
  2. Paul Dolan & Daniel Fujiwara & Robert Metcalfe, 2011. "A Step towards Valuing Utility the Marginal and Cardinal Way," CEP Discussion Papers dp1062, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  3. Katrin Rehdanz & Welsch Heinz & Daiju Naritaa & Toshihiro Okubod, 2013. "Well-being effects of a major negative externality: The case of Fukushima," Working Papers V-358-13, University of Oldenburg, Department of Economics, revised Jul 2013.
  4. Christian Pfeifer, 2013. "Life satisfaction and the consumption values of partners and friends: Empirical evidence from German panel survey data," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 33(4), pages 3131-3142.
  5. Welsch, Heinz, 2009. "Implications of happiness research for environmental economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(11), pages 2735-2742, September.
  6. Heinz Welsch & Philipp Biermann, 2013. "Electricity Supply Preferences in Europe: Evidence from Subjective Well-Being Data," Working Papers V-359-13, University of Oldenburg, Department of Economics, revised Aug 2013.

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