The Social Costs of Civil Conflict: Evidence from Surveys of Happiness
This paper uses data on stated subjective well-being to capture the intangible costs of civil conflict. By running cross-national regressions with happiness as the dependent variable, and the number of conflict victims and income as explanatory variables, it investigates if and in which way civil conflict affects happiness, and derives the implied monetary equivalent of the unhappiness caused. The paper finds that the number of conflict victims and their change over time significantly affect subjective well-being directly through health and psychic effects as well as indirectly through reduced income. The non-pecuniary effects are found to be larger than the income-related effect. A change over time in the number of victims has a stronger impact on well-being than the current number. There are sizeable monetary equivalents to these effects. Copyright 2008 The Authors.
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Volume (Year): 61 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2 (05)
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