Species Diversity And Human Well-Being: A Spatial Econometric Approach
AbstractEconomic valuation of biodiversity is generally carried out by applying revealed or stated preference approaches to determine people’s willingness to pay for small changes in management options. Studies on species preservation investigating passive or nonuse values typically rely on stated preference methods such as the contingent valuation approach and often focus on single animal species. The total value of species preservation can only be derived by aggregating the various values. This paper proposes a different approach by investigating country level data on life-satisfaction attempting to explain differences in subjective well-being by reference to amongst other things species diversity. While most recent papers have concentrated on finding determinants of life-satisfaction other than income, little attention has been drawn to spatial interdependencies. Most researchers investigating the determinants of life-satisfaction implicitly assume that subjective well-being is unaffected by events in neighbouring locations. The existence of spatial relationships in the data has implications for the econometric techniques typically employed including misleading inference testing procedures, bias and inconsistency depending on the precise form of the spatial relationship. We extend our analysis by a spatial econometric approach investigating whether and to what extend spatial relationships exist. Spatially weighted variables are shown to be a highly significant determinant of life-satisfaction. As nature does not respect man-made borders, neither does peoples happiness. Furthermore, even when controlling for a range of other factors we find a significant relationship with species diversity; the higher a countries number of bird or mammal species or the lower the percentage of bird species threatened the more satisfied the people are. Overall and from a human perspective, bird species seem to be a better indicator for biodiversity.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University in its series Working Papers with number FNU-151.
Length: 24 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2007
Date of revision: Oct 2007
amenity value; biodiversity; life-satisfaction; spatial econometrics; species diversity; well-being;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- R19 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Other
- Q57 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Ecological Economics
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-AGR-2007-11-10 (Agricultural Economics)
- NEP-ALL-2007-11-10 (All new papers)
- NEP-ENV-2007-11-10 (Environmental Economics)
- NEP-HAP-2007-11-10 (Economics of Happiness)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Carson, Richard T. & Hanemann, W. Michael, 2006. "Contingent Valuation," Handbook of Environmental Economics, in: K. G. Mäler & J. R. Vincent (ed.), Handbook of Environmental Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 17, pages 821-936 Elsevier.
- Rehdanz, Katrin & Maddison, David, 2005.
"Climate and happiness,"
Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 111-125, January.
- Nunes, Paulo A. L. D. & van den Bergh, Jeroen C. J. M., 2001. "Economic valuation of biodiversity: sense or nonsense?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(2), pages 203-222, November.
- Bernard M.S. van Praag & Barbara E. Baarsma, 2004.
"Using Happiness Surveys to Value Intangibles: The Case of Airport Noise,"
CESifo Working Paper Series
1163, CESifo Group Munich.
- Bernard M. S. van Praag & Barbara E. Baarsma, 2005. "Using Happiness Surveys to Value Intangibles: The Case of Airport Noise," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(500), pages 224-246, 01.
- van Praag, Bernard M. S. & Baarsma, Barbara E., 2004. "Using Happiness Surveys to Value Intangibles: The Case of Airport Noise," IZA Discussion Papers 1096, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Bernard M.S. van Praag & B.E. Baarsma, 2004. "Using Happiness Surveys to value Intangibles; the Case of Airport Noise," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 04-024/3, Tinbergen Institute.
- Rehdanz, Katrin & Maddison, David, 2008.
"Local environmental quality and life-satisfaction in Germany,"
Elsevier, vol. 64(4), pages 787-797, February.
- Katrin Rehdanz & David J. Maddison, 2006. "Local Environmental Quality and Life-Satisfaction in Germany," Working Papers FNU-119, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Sep 2006.
- Robert J. MacCulloch & Rafael Di Tella & Andrew J. Oswald, 2001.
"Preferences over Inflation and Unemployment: Evidence from Surveys of Happiness,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 335-341, March.
- DiTella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "Preferences over inflation and unemployment: Evidence from surveys of happiness," ZEI Working Papers B 03-2001, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
- Di Tella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert J. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001.
"The Macroeconomics of Happiness,"
The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS)
615, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
- Di Tella, R. & MacCulloch, R.J.: Oswald, A.J., 1997. "The Macroeconomics of Happiness," Papers 19, Centre for Economic Performance & Institute of Economics.
- DiTella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert & Oswald, Andrew J., 1999. "The macroeconomics of happiness," ZEI Working Papers B 03-1999, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
- Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
- Anselin, Luc & Hudak, Sheri, 1992. "Spatial econometrics in practice : A review of software options," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(3), pages 509-536, September.
- Welsch, Heinz, 2002. "Preferences over Prosperity and Pollution: Environmental Valuation Based on Happiness Surveys," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(4), pages 473-94.
- Daniel Kahneman & Robert Sugden, 2005. "Experienced Utility as a Standard of Policy Evaluation," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 32(1), pages 161-181, 09.
- Kahneman, Daniel & Wakker, Peter P & Sarin, Rakesh, 1997. "Back to Bentham? Explorations of Experienced Utility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(2), pages 375-405, May.
- Welsch, Heinz, 2006. "Environment and happiness: Valuation of air pollution using life satisfaction data," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(4), pages 801-813, July.
- Ferrer-i-Carbonell, Ada & Gowdy, John M., 2007. "Environmental degradation and happiness," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(3), pages 509-516, January.
- Won Kim, Chong & Phipps, Tim T. & Anselin, Luc, 2003.
"Measuring the benefits of air quality improvement: a spatial hedonic approach,"
Journal of Environmental Economics and Management,
Elsevier, vol. 45(1), pages 24-39, January.
- Kim, Chong Won & Phipps, Tim T. & Anselin, Luc, 1998. "Measuring The Benefits Of Air Quality Improvement: A Spatial Hedonic Approach," 1998 Annual meeting, August 2-5, Salt Lake City, UT 20959, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
- Loomis, John B. & White, Douglas S., 1996. "Economic benefits of rare and endangered species: summary and meta-analysis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 197-206, September.
- Easterlin, Richard A, 2001. "Income and Happiness: Towards an Unified Theory," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(473), pages 465-84, July.
- Anselin, Luc & Bera, Anil K. & Florax, Raymond & Yoon, Mann J., 1996. "Simple diagnostic tests for spatial dependence," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(1), pages 77-104, February.
- Dritan Osmani, . "A note on optimal transfer schemes, stable coalition for environmental protection and joint maximization assumption," Working Papers FNU-176, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University.
- Pamela Kaval & Matthew Roskruge, 2009. "The Value of Native Bird Conservation: A New Zealand Case Study," Working Papers in Economics 09/11, University of Waikato, Department of Economics.
- 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.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Uwe Schneider).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.