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Hypertension and Happiness across Nations

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  • Blanchflower, David G.

    (Dartmouth College, USA, University of Stirling, NBER, IZA, CESifo and Member, Monetary Policy Committee Bank of England)

  • Oswald, Andrew J.

    (Department of Economics, University of Warwick UK)

Abstract

In surveys of well-being, countries such as Denmark and the Netherlands emerge as particularly happy while nations like Germany and Italy report lower levels of happiness. But are these kinds of findings credible? This paper provides some evidence that the answer is yes. Using data on 16 countries, it shows that happier nations report systematically lower levels of hypertension. As well as potentially validating the differences in measured happiness across nations, this suggests that blood-pressure readings might be valuable as part of a national well-being index. A new ranking of European nations’ GHQ N6 mental-health scores is also given.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Warwick, Department of Economics in its series The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) with number 828.

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Length: 35 pages
Date of creation: 2007
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wrk:warwec:828

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Keywords: Health ; hypertension ; Gross National Happiness ; GNH index ; GWB index ; ghq ; blood pressure ; national well-being index.;

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