Subjective and Objective Indicators of Racial Progress
AbstractProgress in closing differences in many objective outcomes for blacks relative to whites has slowed, and even worsened, over the past three decades. However, over this period the racial gap in wellbeing has shrunk. In the early 1970s data revealed much lower levels of subjective well‐being among blacks relative to whites. Investigating various measures of well‐being, we find that the well‐being of blacks has increased both absolutely and relative to that of whites. While a racial gap in well‐being remains, two‐fifths of the gap has closed and these gains have occurred despite little progress in closing other racial gaps such as those in income, employment, and education. Much of the current racial gap in well‐being can be explained by differences in the objective conditions of the lives of black and white Americans. Thus making further progress will likely require progress in closing racial gaps in objective circumstances.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis, Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University in its series CAMA Working Papers with number 2013-17.
Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: Mar 2013
Date of revision:
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Subjective well‐being; life satisfaction; happiness; race;
Other versions of this item:
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2012. "Subjective and Objective Indicators of Racial Progress," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 41(2), pages 459 - 493.
- Stevenson, Betsey & Wolfers, Justin, 2013. "Subjective and Objective Indicators of Racial Progress," IZA Discussion Papers 7309, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2013. "Subjective and Objective Indicators of Racial Progress," NBER Working Papers 18916, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2013. "Subjective and Objective Indicators of Racial Progress," CESifo Working Paper Series 4183, CESifo Group Munich.
- Stevenson, Betsey & Wolfers, Justin, 2013. "Subjective and Objective Indicators of Racial Progress," CEPR Discussion Papers 9408, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- D6 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics
- I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
- J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
- J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
- K1 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2013-05-24 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEM-2013-05-24 (Demographic Economics)
- NEP-LTV-2013-05-24 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
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- Owen, Ann & Phillips, Anne, 2013. "Education, income, and the distribution of happiness," MPRA Paper 49387, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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