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Environmental Surroundings And Personal Well-Being In Urban China

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Author Info

  • Russell Smyth
  • Ingrid Nielsen
  • Qingguo Zhai
  • Tiemin Liu
  • Yin Liu
  • C.Y. Tang
  • Zhihong Wang
  • Zuxiang Wang
  • Juyong Zhang

Abstract

We examine the relationship between atmospheric pollution, water pollution, traffic congestion, access to parkland and personal well-being using a survey administered across six Chinese cities in 2007. In contrast to existing studies of the determinants of well-being by economists, which have typically employed single item indicators to measure well-being, we use the Personal Well-Being Index (PWI). We also employ the Job Satisfaction Survey (JSS) to measure job satisfaction, which is one of the variables for which we control when examining the relationship between environmental surroundings and personal well-being. Previous research by psychologists has shown the PWI and JSS to have good psychometric properties in western and Chinese samples. A robust finding is that in cities with higher levels of atmospheric pollution and traffic congestion, respondents report lower levels of personal well-being ceteris paribus. We find that a one standard deviation increase in suspended particles or sulphur dioxide emissions is roughly equivalent to a 12-13 percent reduction in average monthly income in the six cities. This result suggests that the personal well-being of China's urban population can be enhanced if China were to pursue a more balanced growth path which curtailed atmospheric pollution.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Monash University, Department of Economics in its series Monash Economics Working Papers with number 32/08.

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Length: 37 pages
Date of creation: 02 Nov 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:mos:moswps:2008-32

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Keywords: China; Environment; Pollution; Personal Well-Being.;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Christopher Ambrey & Christopher Fleming, 2014. "Life Satisfaction in Australia: Evidence from Ten Years of the HILDA Survey," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 115(2), pages 691-714, January.
  2. Christine Bertram & Katrin Rehdanz, 2014. "The role of urban green space for human well-being," Kiel Working Papers 1911, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  3. Ferreira, Susana & Akay, Alpaslan & Brereton, Finbarr & Cuñado, Juncal & Martinsson, Peter & Moro, Mirko, 2012. "Life Satisfaction and Air Quality in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 6732, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  4. Carlsson, Fredrik & Lampi, Elina & Li, Wanxin & Martinsson, Peter, 2014. "Subjective well-being among preadolescents and their parents – Evidence of intergenerational transmission of well-being from urban China," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 11-18.
  5. Aviral Kumar TIWARI, 2011. "Energy Consumption, Co2 Emission and Economic Growth: A Revisit of the Evidence from India," Applied Econometrics and International Development, Euro-American Association of Economic Development, vol. 11(2).
  6. Christopher Ambrey & Christopher Fleming, 2014. "Valuing Ecosystem Diversity in South East Queensland: A Life Satisfaction Approach," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 115(1), pages 45-65, January.
  7. GAO, Wenshu & SMYTH, Russell, 2010. "Job satisfaction and relative income in economic transition: Status or signal?: The case of urban China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 21(3), pages 442-455, September.
  8. Ambrey, Christopher L. & Fleming, Christopher M. & Chan, Andrew Yiu-Chung, 2014. "Estimating the cost of air pollution in South East Queensland: An application of the life satisfaction non-market valuation approach," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(C), pages 172-181.
  9. Ambrey, Christopher L. & Fleming, Christopher M., 2011. "Valuing Ecosystem Diversity in South East Queensland: A Life Satisfaction Approach," 2011 Conference, August 25-26, 2011, Nelson, New Zealand 115347, New Zealand Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
  10. Ambrey, Christopher L. & Fleming, Christopher M., 2012. "Public greenspace and life satisfaction in urban Australia," 2012 Conference (56th), February 7-10, 2012, Freemantle, Australia 124302, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society.
  11. Carlsson, Fredrik & Lampi, Elina & Li, Wanxin & Martinsson, Peter, 2011. "Subjective well-being among preadolescents - Evidence from urban China," Working Papers in Economics 500, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  12. Heinz Welsch & Susana Ferreira, 2014. "Environment, Well-Being, and Experienced Preference," Working Papers v-367-14, University of Oldenburg, Department of Economics, revised May 2014.
  13. Manfred Lenzen & Robert A. Cummins, 2013. "Happiness versus the Environment—A Case Study of Australian Lifestyles," Challenges, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 4(1), pages 56-74, May.

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