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Priming Effects in Measuring Life Satisfaction

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Abstract

Life satisfaction, as an indicator of subjective well-being, has received increasing attention in the recent decades. It has become a potential indicator of development, to be used complementary to objective measures. However, no clear consensus exists on the relationship between life satisfaction and satisfaction with the various domains of life as well as on the measurement of life satisfaction. This paper addresses the relationship between overall life satisfaction and domain satisfaction (DS). The objective is to identify potential biases induced by priming effects when measuring DS. Four types of theoretical models, derived from existing literature, are tested in different scenarios. Data from three waves of the European Quality of Life Surveys are analyzed using a structural equation modeling framework to provide empirical evidence. An original experimental design is employed to demonstrate that priming effects cannot be ignored. A comparison of models including priming effects and those ignoring such biases shows that the former is a better fit and has higher propensity to explain the variations in life satisfaction and DS. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Suggested Citation

  • Bogdan Voicu, 2015. "Priming Effects in Measuring Life Satisfaction," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 124(3), pages 993-1013, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:soinre:v:124:y:2015:i:3:p:993-1013
    DOI: 10.1007/s11205-014-0818-0
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Ed Diener, 1994. "Assessing subjective well-being: Progress and opportunities," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 103-157, February.
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    5. Fabio Leonardi & Liana Spazzafumo & Fiorella Marcellini, 2005. "Subjective Well-Being: The Constructionist Point of View. A Longitudinal Study to Verify The Predictive Power of Top-Down Effects and Bottom-Up Processes," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 70(1), pages 53-77, March.
    6. Alex Michalos, 1985. "Multiple discrepancies theory (MDT)," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 16(4), pages 347-413, May.
    7. Bernhard Christoph & Heinz-Herbert Noll, 2003. "Subjective Well-Being in the European Union during the 90ies," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 64(3), pages 521-546, December.
    8. Chang-Ming Hsieh, 2008. "The Relative Importance of Health," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 87(1), pages 127-137, May.
    9. Joseph Rode & Janet Near, 2005. "Spillover Between Work Attitudes and Overall Life Attitudes: Myth or Reality?," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 70(1), pages 79-109, March.
    10. Seth Kaplan & Joseph Luchman & Landon Mock, 2013. "General and Specific Question Sequence Effects in Satisfaction Surveys: Integrating Directional and Correlational Effects," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 14(5), pages 1443-1458, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Clara ViƱas-Bardolet & Monica Guillen-Royo & Joan Torrent-Sellens, 2018. "Job characteristics and life satisfaction in Europe: A domains-of-life approach," Working Papers on Innovation Studies 20180412, Centre for Technology, Innovation and Culture, University of Oslo.

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