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Who Benefits from Economic Freedom? Unraveling the Effect of Economic Freedom on Subjective Well-Being

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  • Gehring, Kai

Abstract

Who benefits from economic freedom? Results from a panel of 86 countries over the 1990–2005 period suggest that overall economic freedom has a significant positive effect on subjective well-being. Its dimensions legal security and property rights, sound money, and regulation are in particular strong predictors of higher well-being. The overall positive effect is not affected by socio-demographics; the effects of individual dimensions vary, however. Developing countries profit more from higher economic freedom, in particular from reducing the regulatory burden. Culture moderates the effect: societies that are more tolerant and have a positive attitude toward the market economy profit the most.

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  • Gehring, Kai, 2013. "Who Benefits from Economic Freedom? Unraveling the Effect of Economic Freedom on Subjective Well-Being," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 50(C), pages 74-90.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:wdevel:v:50:y:2013:i:c:p:74-90
    DOI: 10.1016/j.worlddev.2013.05.003
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    1. repec:bla:coecpo:v:35:y:2017:i:2:p:373-391 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Nejad, Maryam Naghsh & Young, Andrew T., 2016. "Want freedom, will travel: Emigrant self-selection according to institutional quality," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 45(S), pages 71-84.
    3. Bjørnskov, Christian & Dreher, Axel & Fischer, Justina A.V. & Schnellenbach, Jan & Gehring, Kai, 2013. "Inequality and happiness: When perceived social mobility and economic reality do not match," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 91(C), pages 75-92.
    4. Kreibaum, Merle, 2016. "Their Suffering, Our Burden? How Congolese Refugees Affect the Ugandan Population," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 262-287.
    5. Cheng, Zhiming & King, Stephen P. & Smyth, Russell & Wang, Haining, 2016. "Housing property rights and subjective wellbeing in urban China," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 45(S), pages 160-174.
    6. Bruno Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2017. "Public Choice and Happiness," CREMA Working Paper Series 2017-03, Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA).
    7. repec:spr:jhappi:v:18:y:2017:i:4:d:10.1007_s10902-016-9770-9 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Nikolova, Milena, 2016. "Minding the happiness gap: Political institutions and perceived quality of life in transition," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 45(S), pages 129-148.
    9. Kai Gehring & Katharina Michaelowa & Axel Dreher & Franziska Spörri, 2015. "Do we know what we think we know? Aid fragmentation and effectiveness revisited," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 185, Courant Research Centre PEG.
    10. Joshua C. Hall & Brad R. Humphreys & Jane E. Ruseski, 2015. "Economic Freedom, Race, and Health Disparities: Evidence from US States," Working Papers 15-43, Department of Economics, West Virginia University.
    11. Raymond J. March & Conrad Lyford & Benjamin Powell, 2017. "Causes and barriers to increases in economic freedom," International Review of Economics, Springer;Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations (HEIRS), vol. 64(1), pages 87-103, March.
    12. Hans Pitlik & Martin Rode, 2014. "Free to Choose? Economic Freedom, Relative Income, and Life Control Perceptions," WIFO Working Papers 482, WIFO.
    13. Joshua C. Hall & Brad R. Humphreys & Jane E. Ruseski, 2015. "Economic Freedom and Participation in Physical Activity," Working Papers 15-17, Department of Economics, West Virginia University.
    14. Berggren, Niclas & Nilsson, Therese, 2015. "Globalization and the transmission of social values: The case of tolerance," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 371-389.
    15. repec:sae:pubfin:v:46:y:2018:i:2:p:249-275 is not listed on IDEAS
    16. Berggren, Niclas & Bjørnskov, Christian & Nilsson, Therese, 2017. "Do Equal Rights for a Minority Affect General Life Satisfaction?," Working Paper Series 1156, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.

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