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Buen Vivir (living well) in Ecuador: Community and environmental satisfaction without household material prosperity?

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  • Guardiola, Jorge
  • García-Quero, Fernando

Abstract

This paper provides a quantitative approach to assessing whether the subjective wellbeing (SWB) of Ecuadorian people is dependent on income and employment or on more distinctive features relating to Buen Vivir ethos. The latter are reflected in the indigenous Buen Vivir ideology, based mainly on relations with the community, the environment and food sovereignty. The empirical analysis shows that both Buen Vivir features and factors such as income and unemployment status are significant in the models explaining SWB. Accordingly, economic policies should take into account the Buen Vivir ethos, that seems to be important for the SWB of the Ecuadorian people. This supports the conservationist political position, which focuses on protecting the environment and people's traditional livelihoods, rather than the extractive view, which regards people's welfare as merely dependent on income.

Suggested Citation

  • Guardiola, Jorge & García-Quero, Fernando, 2014. "Buen Vivir (living well) in Ecuador: Community and environmental satisfaction without household material prosperity?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 177-184.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:107:y:2014:i:c:p:177-184
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2014.07.032
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    Keywords

    Subjective wellbeing; Economic policies; Environmental protection; Community; Food sovereignty; Buen Vivir;

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

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