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Life satisfaction and sexual minorities: Evidence from Australia and the United Kingdom

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  • Powdthavee, Nattavudh
  • Wooden, Mark

Abstract

Very little is known about how the differential treatment of sexual minorities could influence subjective reports of overall well-being. This paper seeks to fill this gap. Data from two large surveys that provide nationally representative samples for two different countries – Australia and the UK – are used to estimate a simultaneous equations model of life satisfaction. The model allows for self-reported sexual identity to influence a measure of life satisfaction both directly and indirectly through seven different channels: (i) income; (ii) employment; (iii) health (iv) marriage and de facto relationships; (v) children; (vi) friendship networks; and (vii) education. Lesbian, gay and bisexual persons are found to be significantly less satisfied with their lives than otherwise comparable heterosexual persons. In both countries this is the result of a combination of direct and indirect effects.

Suggested Citation

  • Powdthavee, Nattavudh & Wooden, Mark, 2015. "Life satisfaction and sexual minorities: Evidence from Australia and the United Kingdom," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 116(C), pages 107-126.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:116:y:2015:i:c:p:107-126
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2015.04.012
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Berggren, Niclas & Nilsson, Therese & Bjørnskov, Christian, 2015. "What Aspects of Society Affect the Quality of Life of a Minority? Global Evidence from the New Gay Happiness Index," Working Paper Series 1101, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.
    2. repec:eee:eneeco:v:67:y:2017:i:c:p:49-59 is not listed on IDEAS

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