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Do Danes and Italians Rate Life Satisfaction in the Same Way? Using Vignettes to Correct for Individual-Specific Scale Biases

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Author Info

  • Viola Angelini

    ()
    (University of Padua)

  • Danilo CAVAPOZZI

    ()
    (University of Padua)

  • Luca CORAZZINI

    ()
    (University of Padua)

  • Omar PACCAGNELLA

    ()
    (University of Padua)

Abstract

Self-reported life satisfaction is highly heterogeneous across similar countries. We show that this phenomenon can be largely explained by the fact that individuals adopt different scales and benchmarks in evaluating themselves. Using a cross sectional dataset on individuals aged 50 and over in ten European countries, we compare estimates from an Ordered Probit in which life satisfaction scales are invariant across respondents with those from a Hopit model in which vignettes are used to correct for individual-specific scale biases. We find that variations in response scales explain a large part of the differences found in raw data. Moreover, the crosscountry ranking in life satisfaction dramatically depends on scale biases.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche "Marco Fanno" in its series "Marco Fanno" Working Papers with number 0090.

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Length: 32 pages
Date of creation: Feb 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pad:wpaper:0090

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Keywords: Life satisfaction; scale biases; vignette; counterfactuals.;

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Viola Angelini & Danilo Cavapozzi & Luca Corazzini & Omar Paccagnella, 2012. "Age, Health and Life Satisfaction Among Older Europeans," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 105(2), pages 293-308, January.
  2. Andrew M. Jones; Nigel Rice, Silvana Robone; & Nigel Rice; & Silvana Robone:, 2012. "A comparison of parametric and non-parametric adjustments using vignettes for self-reported data," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 12/10, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
  3. Eric Bonsang & Arthur Soest, 2012. "Satisfaction with Job and Income Among Older Individuals Across European Countries," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 105(2), pages 227-254, January.
  4. Omar Paccagnella, 2011. "Anchoring vignettes with sample selection due to non‐response," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 174(3), pages 665-687, 07.
  5. Christian Bjørnskov, 2010. "How Comparable are the Gallup World Poll Life Satisfaction Data?," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 11(1), pages 41-60, March.
  6. Andrew E. Clark & Yarine Fawaz, 2009. "Valuing jobs via retirement: European evidence," Working Papers halshs-00566855, HAL.

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