Partisan social happiness
AbstractWe use data on the subjective well-being of more than a quarter of a million people living in the OECD over the period 1975-92 to study the behavior of partisan social happiness functions. Controlling for personal characteristics of the respondents, year and country fixed effects and country specific time trends, we find that the data describe social happiness functions for left-wing and right-wing individuals where inflation and unemployment enter negatively. We use these functions to test the root assumption of partisan business cycle models where leftwing individuals care more about unemployment relative to inflation than rightwingers (e.g. Alesina (1987)). Bootstrap confidence intervals suggest that up to 90 per cent of the time the evidence is consistent with this assumption. We also find that left-wingers like increases in government consumption more than rightwingers, that the latter have become more concerned with inflation over time and that the poor (rich) behave differently from the left (right). Finally, we find that individuals declare themselves to be happier when the party they support is in power, even after controlling for economic variables. Our findings are hard to explain using median voter models but are to be expected in a partisan world. --
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 ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn in its series ZEI Working Papers with number B 22-1999.
Date of creation: 1999
Date of revision:
Median voter; partisan business cycles; subjective well-being;
Other versions of this item:
- E6 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Macroeconomic Policy, Macroeconomic Aspects of Public Finance, and General Outlook
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.:
- Rogoff, Kenneth & Sibert, Anne, 1988.
"Elections and Macroeconomic Policy Cycles,"
Review of Economic Studies,
Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(1), pages 1-16, January.
- Konow, James & Earley, Joseph, 2008.
"The Hedonistic Paradox: Is homo economicus happier,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 92(1-2), pages 1-33, February.
- Konow, James & Earley, Joseph, 2007. "The Hedonistic Paradox: Is Homo Economicus Happier?," MPRA Paper 2728, University Library of Munich, Germany.
- Blanchflower, D.G. & Oswald, A., 1991.
"What Makes an Entrepreneur?,"
Economics Series Working Papers
99125, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2004.
"Well-being over time in Britain and the USA,"
Journal of Public Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 88(7-8), pages 1359-1386, July.
- David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald, 2000. "Well-Being Over Time in Britain and the USA," NBER Working Papers 7487, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "Well-Being Over Time in Britain and the USA," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 616, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
- Alesina, Alberto, 1987. "Macroeconomic Policy in a Two-party System as a Repeated Game," Scholarly Articles 4552531, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- 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.
- 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.
- Di Tella, R. & MacCulloch, R.J.: Oswald, A.J., 1997. "The Macroeconomics of Happiness," Papers 19, Centre for Economic Performance & Institute of Economics.
- Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
- Blinder, Alan S & Esaki, Howard Y, 1978. "Macroeconomic Activity and Income Distribution in the Postwar United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 60(4), pages 604-09, November.
- 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.
- Michael Fordyce, 1988. "A review of research on the happiness measures: A sixty second index of happiness and mental health," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 20(4), pages 355-381, August.
- Tinbergen, Jan, 1991. "On the measurement of welfare," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 50(1-2), pages 7-13, October.
- Moulton, Brent R., 1986. "Random group effects and the precision of regression estimates," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 32(3), pages 385-397, August.
- Winkelmann, Liliana & Winkelmann, Rainer, 1998. "Why Are the Unemployed So Unhappy? Evidence from Panel Data," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(257), pages 1-15, February.
- Robert J. Shiller, 1997.
"Why Do People Dislike Inflation?,"
in: Reducing Inflation: Motivation and Strategy, pages 13-70
National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Yew-Kwang Ng, 1996. "Happiness surveys: Some comparability issues and an exploratory survey based on just perceivable increments," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 38(1), pages 1-27, May.
- Easterlin, Richard A., 1995. "Will raising the incomes of all increase the happiness of all?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 35-47, June.
- Nordhaus, William D, 1975. "The Political Business Cycle," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 42(2), pages 169-90, April.
- Alesina, Alberto F & Roubini, Nouriel, 1990.
"Political Cycles in OECD Economies,"
CEPR Discussion Papers
470, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Alberto Alesina, 1988. "Macroeconomics and Politics," NBER Chapters, in: NBER Macroeconomics Annual 1988, Volume 3, pages 13-62 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Roubini, Nouriel & Alesina, Alberto, 1992. "Political Cycles in OECD Economies," Scholarly Articles 4553025, Harvard University Department of Economics.
- Thurow, Lester C, 1970. "Analyzing the American Income Distribution," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(2), pages 261-69, May.
Blog mentionsAs found by EconAcademics.org, the blog aggregator for Economics research:
- Money makes people right-wing and inegalitarian
by Blog Admin in British Politics and Policy at LSE on 2014-02-18 14:00:55
This item has more than 25 citations. To prevent cluttering this page, these citations are listed on a separate page. reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.Access and download statisticsgeneral information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (ZBW - German National Library of Economics).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.