Balancing ‘full life’: An economic approach to the route to happiness
AbstractThis paper presents a formalization and modification of Martin Seligman’s concept of full life, employing basic microeconomics. A class of Stone–Geary utility functions is proposed as an analytical tool for scrutinizing individual decision making with respect to a pleasant, engaged and meaningful life. Using this specification of Seligman’s concept, we explain why people may differ with respect to the levels of a pleasant, engaged and meaningful life that they are trying to achieve. Moreover, we modify Seligman’s full life to the concept of balanced full life. This extension requires that, in addition to differences in people’s preferences regarding various aspects of life, differences in their time opportunity costs also be taken into account. Finally, the unique role of a meaningful life is discussed.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Psychology.
Volume (Year): 33 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/joep
Happiness; Life satisfaction; Utility functions; Allocation of time;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
- D69 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Other
- D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Chihwa Kao & Lung-fei Lee & Mark M. Pitt, 2001.
"Simulated Maximum Likelihood Estimation of the Linear Expenditure System with Binding Non-Negativity Constraints,"
Annals of Economics and Finance,
Society for AEF, vol. 2(1), pages 215-235, May.
- Chihwa Kao & Lung-fei Lee & Mark M. Pitt, 2000. "Simulated Maximum Likelihood Estimation of the Linear Expenditure System with Binding Non-Negativity Constraints," CEMA Working Papers 50, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics, revised Apr 2001.
- Jeremy Greenwood & Guillaume Vandenbroucke, 2005.
"Hours Worked: Long-Run Trends,"
NBER Working Papers
11629, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Hamermesh, Daniel S. & Lee, Jungmin, 2005.
"Stressed Out on Four Continents: Time Crunch or Yuppie Kvetch?,"
IZA Discussion Papers
1815, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Daniel S. Hamermesh & Jungmin Lee, 2007. "Stressed Out on Four Continents: Time Crunch or Yuppie Kvetch?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 374-383, May.
- Daniel S. Hamermesh & Jungmin Lee, 2003. "Stressed Out on Four Continents: Time Crunch or Yuppie Kvetch?," NBER Working Papers 10186, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Garrett Kafka & Albert Kozma, 2002. "The Construct Validity of Ryff's Scales of Psychological Well-Being (SPWB) and their Relationship to Measures of Subjective Well-Being," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 57(2), pages 171-190, February.
- Carol Ryff & Burton Singer, 2008. "Know Thyself and Become What You Are: A Eudaimonic Approach to Psychological Well-Being," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 9(1), pages 13-39, January.
- Ariel Rodríguez & Pavlína Látková & Ya-Yen Sun, 2008. "The relationship between leisure and life satisfaction: application of activity and need theory," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 86(1), pages 163-175, March.
- Brown, Murray & Heien, Dale M, 1972. "The S-Branch Utility Tree: A Generalization of the Linear Expenditure System," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 40(4), pages 737-47, July.
- Daniel Kahneman & Alan B. Krueger & David Schkade & Norbert Schwarz & Arthur Stone, 2004. "Toward National Well-Being Accounts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(2), pages 429-434, May.
- Yew-Kwang Ng, 1999. "Utility, informed preference, or happiness: Following Harsanyi's argument to its logical conclusion," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 197-216.
- Easterlin, Richard A., 2006. "Life cycle happiness and its sources: Intersections of psychology, economics, and demography," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 463-482, August.
- Deaton,Angus & Muellbauer,John, 1980. "Economics and Consumer Behavior," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521296762, October.
- Christopher Peterson & Nansook Park & Martin Seligman, 2005. "Orientations to happiness and life satisfaction: the full life versus the empty life," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 6(1), pages 25-41, 03.
- Kathleen Lloyd & Christopher Auld, 2002. "The Role of Leisure in Determining Quality of Life: Issues of Content and Measurement," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 57(1), pages 43-71, January.
- Bruce Headey, 2008. "Life Goals Matter to Happiness: A Revision of Set-Point Theory," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 86(2), pages 213-231, April.
- Michael Rauscher, 1997. "Conspicuous consumption, economic growth, and taxation," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 66(1), pages 35-42, February.
- Joar Vittersø & Hella Oelmann & Anita Wang, 2009. "Life Satisfaction is not a Balanced Estimator of the Good Life: Evidence from Reaction Time Measures and Self-Reported Emotions," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 1-17, March.
- M. Joseph Sirgy & Jiyun Wu, 2009. "The Pleasant Life, the Engaged Life, and the Meaningful Life: What about the Balanced Life?," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 10(2), pages 183-196, April.
- Keeney,Ralph L. & Raiffa,Howard, 1993. "Decisions with Multiple Objectives," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521438834, October.
- Yoshitaka Iwasaki, 2007. "Leisure and quality of life in an international and multicultural context: what are major pathways linking leisure to quality of life?," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 82(2), pages 233-264, June.
- Solon, Gary, 2010. "A simple microeconomic foundation for a Tobit model of consumer demand," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 106(2), pages 131-132, February.
- Mark M. Pitt & Daniel L. Millimet, 1999. "Estimation of Coherent Demand Systems with Many Binding Non-Negativity Constraints," Working Papers 99-4, Brown University, Department of Economics.
- Barry Schwartz & Kenneth Sharpe, 2006. "Practical Wisdom: Aristotle meets Positive Psychology," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 377-395, 09.
- Barten, Anton P, 1977. "The Systems of Consumer Demand Functions Approach: A Review," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 45(1), pages 23-51, January.
- David Colander, 2007. "Edgeworth's Hedonimeter and the Quest to Measure Utility," Middlebury College Working Paper Series 0723, Middlebury College, Department of Economics.
- Dianne Vella-Brodrick & Nansook Park & Christopher Peterson, 2009. "Three Ways to Be Happy: Pleasure, Engagement, and Meaning—Findings from Australian and US Samples," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 90(2), pages 165-179, January.
- Kraft, Arthur & Kraft, John, 1977. "V-Branch: A generalized utility function," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 9(1), pages 97-108.
- Jacolyn Norrish & Dianne Vella-Brodrick, 2008. "Is the Study of Happiness a Worthy Scientific Pursuit?," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 87(3), pages 393-407, July.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.