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How to assess happiness? A tale of three measures

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  • Vani Borooah

Abstract

A growing literature in economics points to the importance of targeting policy towards making people happy rather than towards making them well-off. Empirical work in this area relies, however, on a simple direct question to survey respondents on how happy they feel. This study shows, using three different measures of happiness/unhappiness, that while there was a commonality in the factors making for happiness (or unhappiness), the quantitative strength of the factors, in terms of their effects on the various outcomes, differed according to the definition used. Moreover, some factors influenced particular measures of happiness but did not influence others.

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File URL: http://www.informaworld.com/openurl?genre=article&doi=10.1080/1350485042000323686&magic=repec&7C&7C8674ECAB8BB840C6AD35DC6213A474B5
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Applied Economics Letters.

Volume (Year): 12 (2005)
Issue (Month): 3 ()
Pages: 191-194

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Handle: RePEc:taf:apeclt:v:12:y:2005:i:3:p:191-194

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  1. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald, 2000. "Well-Being Over Time in Britain and the USA," NBER Working Papers 7487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
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