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Hedonic capital, adaptation and resilience

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  • Graham, Liam
  • Oswald, Andrew J.

Abstract

The paper sets out a theory of hedonic adaptation and resilience. By distinguishing between stocks and flows of psychological resources, it suggests a new way to think about the dynamics of human well-being or 'happiness'. Central to the analysis is a concept we refer to as hedonic capital. We build on the idea that the evolutionary function of happiness is as a motivating device. Our model successfully replicates the patterns routinely found in well-being data - particularly the empirical regularity of an approximately stable level of well-being and the adaptive tendency to return towards that level. The formal model provides a number of testable empirical predictions.

Suggested Citation

  • Graham, Liam & Oswald, Andrew J., 2010. "Hedonic capital, adaptation and resilience," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 76(2), pages 372-384, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:76:y:2010:i:2:p:372-384
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    Cited by:

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    2. Antoine Marsaudon, 2019. "Do Health Shocks Modify Personality Traits? Evidence from Locus Of Control," PSE Working Papers halshs-01976868, HAL.
    3. Leive, Adam, 2018. "Dying to win? Olympic Gold medals and longevity," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C), pages 193-204.
    4. Bertoni, Marco, 2015. "Hungry today, unhappy tomorrow? Childhood hunger and subjective wellbeing later in life," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 40-53.
    5. Schünemann, Johannes & Strulik, Holger & Trimborn, Timo, 2017. "Going from bad to worse: Adaptation to poor health health spending, longevity, and the value of life," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 140(C), pages 130-146.
    6. Bruno Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2014. "Economic Consequences of Mispredicting Utility," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 15(4), pages 937-956, August.
    7. Marie Blaise & Laetitia Dillenseger, 2020. "Informal caregivers and life satisfaction: Empirical Evidence from the Netherlands," Working Papers of BETA 2020-55, Bureau d'Economie Théorique et Appliquée, UDS, Strasbourg.
    8. Arie Sherman & Tal Shavit, 2018. "The Thrill of Creative Effort at Work: An Empirical Study on Work, Creative Effort and Well-Being," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 19(7), pages 2049-2069, October.
    9. Pugno, Maurizio, 2013. "Scitovsky and the income-happiness paradox," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 1-10.
    10. Etilé, Fabrice & Frijters, Paul & Johnston, David W. & Shields, Michael A., 2020. "Psychological Resilience to Major Socioeconomic Life Events," IZA Discussion Papers 13063, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    11. Stutzer, Alois & Frey, Bruno S., 2012. "Recent Developments in the Economics of Happiness: A Selective Overview," IZA Discussion Papers 7078, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    12. Koch, Christian, 2013. "The Virtue Ethics Hypothesis: Is there a nexus between virtues and well-being?," VfS Annual Conference 2013 (Duesseldorf): Competition Policy and Regulation in a Global Economic Order 80054, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    13. Mamatzakis, Emmanuel C. & Tsionas, Mike G., 2021. "Making inference of British household's happiness efficiency: A Bayesian latent model," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 294(1), pages 312-326.
    14. Reinhard A. Weisser, 2019. "The price of mobility," Review of Regional Research: Jahrbuch für Regionalwissenschaft, Springer;Gesellschaft für Regionalforschung (GfR), vol. 39(1), pages 25-64, February.
    15. Arie Sherman & Tal Shavit & Guy Barokas, 2020. "A Dynamic Model on Happiness and Exogenous Wealth Shock: The Case of Lottery Winners," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 21(1), pages 117-137, January.
    16. Fengyu Wu, 2020. "An Examination of the Effects of Consumption Expenditures on Life Satisfaction in Australia," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 21(8), pages 2735-2771, December.
    17. Aviad Tur-Sinai, 2014. "Adaptation patterns and consumer behavior as a dependency on terror," Mind & Society: Cognitive Studies in Economics and Social Sciences, Springer;Fondazione Rosselli, vol. 13(2), pages 257-269, November.
    18. Buddelmeyer, Hielke & Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2016. "Can having internal locus of control insure against negative shocks? Psychological evidence from panel data," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 122(C), pages 88-109.
    19. Piper, Alan T., 2015. "Sliding down the U-shape? A dynamic panel investigation of the age-well-being relationship, focusing on young adults," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 143(C), pages 54-61.
    20. Fabrice Etilé & Paul Frijters & David W. Johson & Michael A. Shields, 2017. "Modelling Heterogeneity in the Resilience to Major Socioeconomic Life Events," Working Papers halshs-01485989, HAL.
    21. Piper, Alan T., 2014. "Sliding down the U-shape? An investigation of the age-well-being relationship, with a focus on young adults," MPRA Paper 55819, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    22. Robert Cummins & Mark Wooden, 2014. "Personal Resilience in Times of Crisis: The Implications of SWB Homeostasis and Set-Points," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 223-235, February.
    23. Jan-Emmanuel De Neve & Ed Diener & Louis Tay & Cody Xuereb, 2013. "The Objective Benefits of Subjective Well-Being," CEP Discussion Papers dp1236, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    24. Arie Sherman & Tal Shavit & Guy Barokas & Nonna Kushnirovich, 2021. "On the Role of Personal Values and Philosophy of Life in Happiness Technology," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 22(3), pages 1055-1070, March.
    25. Antoine Marsaudon, 2019. "Do Health Shocks Modify Personality Traits? Evidence from Locus Of Control," Working Papers halshs-01976868, HAL.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Adaptation Well-being Evolution Happiness Habituation Resilience;

    JEL classification:

    • I3 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty
    • D1 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior

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