Conclusions Regarding Cross-Group Differences in Happiness Depend on Difficulty of Reaching Respondents
A growing literature explores differences in subjective well-being across demographic groups, often relying on surveys with high nonresponse rates. By using the reported number of call attempts made to participants in the University of Michigan's Surveys of Consumers, we show that comparisons among easy-to-reach respondents differ from comparisons among hard-to-reach ones. Notably, easy-to-reach women are happier than easy-to-reach men, but hard-to-reach men are happier than hard-to-reach women, and conclusions of a survey could reverse with more attempted calls. Better alternatives to comparing group sample averages might include putting greater weight on hard-to-reach respondents or even extrapolating trends in responses.
Volume (Year): 103 (2013)
Issue (Month): 7 (December)
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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.:
- Stevenson, Betsey & Wolfers, Justin, 2009.
"The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness,"
IZA Discussion Papers
4200, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2009. "The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness," NBER Working Papers 14969, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2009. "The paradox of declining female happiness," Working Paper Series 2009-11, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
- Stevenson, Betsey & Wolfers, Justin, 2009. "The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness," CEPR Discussion Papers 7311, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
- Katharine G. Abraham & Sara E. Helms & Stanley Presser, 2008. "How Social Processes Distort Measurement: The Impact of Survey Nonresponse on Estimates of Volunteer Work," NBER Working Papers 14076, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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