Modern Economic Growth and Quality of Life: Cross Sectional and Time Series Evidence
AbstractTo what extent are improvements in quality of life (material living levels, health, education, political and civil rights, happiness, and the like) associated with economic growth? International comparisons of quality of life (QoL) conditions almost always point to a strong positive association with real GDP per capita. Historical experience, however, frequently belies the results of these comparisons. More often than not the timing of various improvements in QoL, material living levels excepted, is different from that in real GDP per capita – some indicators preceding, others following. Moreover, the sequence of improvements in various aspects of QoL is not always the same from one part of the world to another. And sometimes, as in the case of happiness and life satisfaction, QoL indicators remain unchanged despite a doubling or more of real GDP per capita. In contrast to the results of simple international point-of-time comparisons, history suggests that improvements in many realms of life are not an automatic result of economic growth.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 2755.
Length: 61 pages
Date of creation: Apr 2007
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Kenneth C. Land (ed.). Handbook of Social Indicators and Quality-of-Life Research, New York and London: Springer, 2011
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- N30 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - General, International, or Comparative
- O57 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries
- D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
- Y1 - Miscellaneous Categories - - Data: Tables and Charts
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-05-19 (All new papers)
- NEP-DEV-2007-05-19 (Development)
- NEP-HAP-2007-05-19 (Economics of Happiness)
- NEP-LTV-2007-05-19 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
- NEP-SOC-2007-05-19 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
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