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Life Satisfaction in Urban China: Components and Determinants

  • Appleton, Simon
  • Song, Lina

Summary Survey data from urban China in 2002 show levels of life satisfaction to have been low, but not exceptionally so, by international comparison. Many of the determinants of life satisfaction in urban China appear comparable to those for people in other countries. These include, inter alia, unemployment, income, marriage, sex, health, and age. Communist Party membership and political participation raised life satisfaction. People appeared fairly satisfied with economic growth and low inflation, and this contributed to their overall life satisfaction. There was dissatisfaction over pollution, but this--like job insecurity--does not appear to have impacted on life satisfaction.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal World Development.

Volume (Year): 36 (2008)
Issue (Month): 11 (November)
Pages: 2325-2340

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Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:36:y:2008:i:11:p:2325-2340
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/worlddev

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  1. Appleton, Simon & Knight, John & Song, Lina & Xia, Qingjie, 2008. "The Economics of Communist Party Membership: The Curious Case of Rising Numbers and Wage Premium during China’s Transition," IZA Discussion Papers 3454, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Knight, John & Song, Lina, 2006. "Towards a Labour Market in China," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199215553, March.
  3. DiTella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "Preferences over inflation and unemployment: Evidence from surveys of happiness," ZEI Working Papers B 03-2001, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
  4. Morduch, Jonathan & Sicular, Terry, 2000. "Politics, growth, and inequality in rural China: does it pay to join the Party?," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 77(3), pages 331-356, September.
  5. Appleton, Simon & Song, Lina & Xia, Qingjie, 2005. "Has China crossed the river? The evolution of wage structure in urban China during reform and retrenchment," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 644-663, December.
  6. Easterlin, Richard A, 2001. "Income and Happiness: Towards an Unified Theory," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 111(473), pages 465-84, July.
  7. Knight, John & Song, Lina, 1999. "The Rural-Urban Divide: Economic Disparities and Interactions in China," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780198293309, March.
  8. John Knight & Lina Song, 2007. "Subjective Well-being and its Determinants in Rural China," Economics Series Working Papers 334, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
  9. Appleton, Simon & Knight, John & Song, Lina & Xia, Qingjie, 2002. "Labor retrenchment in China: Determinants and consequences," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 13(2-3), pages 252-275.
  10. Simon Appleton & John Knight & Lina Song & Qingjie Xia, 2004. "Contrasting paradigms: segmentation and competitiveness in the formation of the chinese labour market," Journal of Chinese Economic and Business Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 2(3), pages 185-205.
  11. John Knight & Lina Song, 2003. "Increasing urban wage inequality in China," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 11(4), pages 597-619, December.
  12. Björn Gustafsson & Shi Li, 2000. "Economic transformation and the gender earnings gap in urban China," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 13(2), pages 305-329.
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