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Unemployment, Social Capital, and Subjective Well-Being

  • Rainer Winkelmann

    ()

It has been shown in past research that unemployment has a large negative impact on subjective well-being of individuals. In this paper, I explore whether and to what extent people with more social capital are sheltered from the harmful effects of unemployment. Using data from the German Socio-Economic Panel 1984-2004, I find that social capital is an important predictor of well-being levels, but there is no evidence that it moderates the effect of unemployment on well-being. The well-being loss, in turn, is shown to predict job search and re-employment. Possible reasons for these findings are discussed, and suggestions for future research are given.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10902-008-9097-2
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Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Happiness Studies.

Volume (Year): 10 (2009)
Issue (Month): 4 (August)
Pages: 421-430

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Handle: RePEc:spr:jhappi:v:10:y:2009:i:4:p:421-430
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  1. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
  2. Johannes Schwarze & Rainer Winkelmann, 2005. "What Can Happiness Research Tell Us about Altruism?: Evidence from the German Socio-Economic Panel," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 475, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  3. Wim Groot & Henriƫtte Brink & Bernard Praag, 2007. "The Compensating Income Variation of Social Capital," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 82(2), pages 189-207, June.
  4. Andrew E. Clark and Andrew J. Oswald, . "Satisfaction and Comparison Income," Economics Discussion Papers 419, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
  5. Alois Stutzer & Rafael Lalive, 2004. "The Role of Social Work Norms in Job Searching and Subjective Well-Being," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 2(4), pages 696-719, 06.
  6. Erzo F. P. Luttmer, 2005. "Neighbors as Negatives: Relative Earnings and Well-Being," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 120(3), pages 963-1002, August.
  7. Clark, Andrew E & Georgellis, Yannis & Sanfey, Peter, 2001. "Scarring: The Psychological Impact of Past Unemployment," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 68(270), pages 221-41, May.
  8. Goldsmith, Arthur H. & Veum, Jonathan R. & Darity, William Jr., 1996. "The psychological impact of unemployment and joblessness," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 25(3), pages 333-358.
  9. Clark, Andrew E., 2006. "A Note on Unhappiness and Unemployment Duration," IZA Discussion Papers 2406, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. repec:pse:psecon:2005-43 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Wim Groot & Henriette Maassen van den Brink & Bernard M.S. van Praag, 2007. "The Compensating Income Variation of Social Capital," CESifo Working Paper Series 1889, CESifo Group Munich.
  12. Shields, Michael A. & Wheatley Price, Stephen, 2001. "Exploring the Economic and Social Determinants of Psychological and Psychosocial Health," IZA Discussion Papers 396, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  13. Michael A. Shields & Stephen Wheatley Price, 2005. "Exploring the economic and social determinants of psychological well-being and perceived social support in England," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 168(3), pages 513-537.
  14. Goldsmith, Arthur H. & Veum, Jonathan R. & William Darity, Jr., 1996. "The impact of labor force history on self-esteem and its component parts, anxiety, alienation and depression," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 17(2), pages 183-220, April.
  15. Andrew E. Clark, 2003. "Unemployment as a Social Norm: Psychological Evidence from Panel Data," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 21(2), pages 289-322, April.
  16. Winkelmann, Liliana & Winkelmann, Rainer, 1998. "Why Are the Unemployed So Unhappy? Evidence from Panel Data," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(257), pages 1-15, February.
  17. Andrew E. Clark & Orsolya Lelkes, 2005. "Deliver us from evil: religion as insurance," PSE Working Papers halshs-00590570, HAL.
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