IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this paper

The Life Satisfaction Approach to Environmental Valuation

  • Bruno S. Frey
  • Simon Luechinger
  • Alois Stutzer


    (University of Basel)

The present paper examines the joint effect of fixed-term employment and work organization on job satisfaction using individual-level data from the German Socio-Economic Panel GSOEP). Specifically, we analyze whether workers who are heterogeneous in terms of the type of working contract (fixed-term vs. permanent) do also differ with regard to job satisfaction, when they perform under comparable work organizational conditions. Such information would be quite valuable for employers, because they can learn about the responsiveness of heterogeneous workers to innovative work organizational practices. For this purpose, we at first estimate a linear fixed effects model, thereby controlling for unobserved time-constant characteristics. In a second step, we account for potential remaining endogeneity by combining the fixed effects approach with a two-stage estimation strategy. Our empirical results show that in terms of job satisfaction fixed-term workers and their permanent counterparts respond differently to a number of organizational practices including task diversity, employee involvement, social relations at work, general working conditions, and career prospects. The results may be used by employers to improve their concept of diversity management and specifically the job design of heterogeneous workers.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by Faculty of Business and Economics - University of Basel in its series Working papers with number 2009/08.

in new window

Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bsl:wpaper:2009/08
Contact details of provider: Postal:
Peter-Merian-Weg 6, Postfach, CH-4002 Basel

Web page:

More information through EDIRC

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:

as in new window
  1. Bernard M.S. van Praag & Barbara E. Baarsma, 2004. "Using Happiness Surveys to Value Intangibles: The Case of Airport Noise," CESifo Working Paper Series 1163, CESifo Group Munich.
  2. McCluskey, Jill Jennifer & Rausser, Gordon C, 2000. "Estimation of perceived risk and its effect on property values," CUDARE Working Paper Series 879R, University of California at Berkeley, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Policy.
  3. Smith, V Kerry & Huang, Ju-Chin, 1995. "Can Markets Value Air Quality? A Meta-analysis of Hedonic Property Value Models," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(1), pages 209-27, February.
  4. Carson, Richard T & Flores, Nicholas A, 2000. "Contingent Valuation: Controversies and Evidence," University of California at San Diego, Economics Working Paper Series qt75k752s7, Department of Economics, UC San Diego.
  5. Rehdanz, Katrin & Maddison, David, 2005. "Climate and happiness," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 111-125, January.
    • Katrin Rehdanz & David J. Maddison, 2003. "Climate and Happiness," Working Papers FNU-20, Research unit Sustainability and Global Change, Hamburg University, revised Apr 2003.
  6. Daniel Kahneman & Richard H. Thaler, 2006. "Anomalies: Utility Maximization and Experienced Utility," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 221-234, Winter.
  7. Paul Dolan & Robert Metcalfe, 2008. "Comparing Willingness-to-Pay and Subjective Well-Being in the Context of Non-Market Goods," CEP Discussion Papers dp0890, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  8. Jaren C. Pope, 2008. "Do Seller Disclosures Affect Property Values? Buyer Information and the Hedonic Model," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 84(4), pages 551-572.
  9. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Paul Frijters, 2002. "How important is Methodology for the Estimates of the Determinants of Happiness?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 02-024/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  10. Andrew E. Clark & Paul Frijters & Michael A. Shields, 2008. "Relative income, happiness, and utility: An explanation for the Easterlin paradox and other puzzles," Post-Print halshs-00754299, HAL.
  11. Stutzer, Alois & Frey, Bruno S., 2004. "Stress That Doesn't Pay: The Commuting Paradox," IZA Discussion Papers 1278, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. Paul Dolan & Daniel Kahneman, 2008. "Interpretations Of Utility And Their Implications For The Valuation Of Health," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 118(525), pages 215-234, 01.
  13. Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2008. "Hypertension and happiness across nations," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 218-233, March.
  14. Smith, V. Kerry & Osborne, Laura L., 1996. "Do Contingent Valuation Estimates Pass a "Scope" Test? A Meta-analysis," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 287-301, November.
  15. Daniel Kahneman & Peter P. Wakker & Rakesh Sarin, 1997. "Back to Bentham? Explorations of Experienced Utility," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 112(2), pages 375-406.
  16. W. Michael Hanemann, 1994. "Valuing the Environment through Contingent Valuation," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 19-43, Fall.
  17. Stutzer, Alois & Frey, Bruno S., 2006. "Does marriage make people happy, or do happy people get married?," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 326-347, April.
  18. Mark A. Cohen, 2008. "The Effect of Crime on Life Satisfaction," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(S2), pages S325-S353, 06.
  19. Kenneth Y. Chay & Michael Greenstone, 1998. "Does Air Quality Matter? Evidence from the Housing Market," NBER Working Papers 6826, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  20. Rafael Di Tella & Robert MacCulloch, 2006. "Some Uses of Happiness Data in Economics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 20(1), pages 25-46, Winter.
  21. Richard Carson & Robert Mitchell & Michael Hanemann & Raymond Kopp & Stanley Presser & Paul Ruud, 2003. "Contingent Valuation and Lost Passive Use: Damages from the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 25(3), pages 257-286, July.
  22. Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2001. "What Can Economists Learn from Happiness Research?," CESifo Working Paper Series 503, CESifo Group Munich.
  23. Gardner, Jonathan & Oswald, Andrew J., 2005. "Do Divorcing Couples Become Happier By Breaking Up?," IZA Discussion Papers 1788, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  24. Rosen, Sherwin, 1974. "Hedonic Prices and Implicit Markets: Product Differentiation in Pure Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(1), pages 34-55, Jan.-Feb..
  25. Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-78, December.
  26. MacKerron, George & Mourato, Susana, 2009. "Life satisfaction and air quality in London," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(5), pages 1441-1453, March.
  27. Welsch, Heinz, 2006. "Environment and happiness: Valuation of air pollution using life satisfaction data," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(4), pages 801-813, July.
  28. Austin Troy & Jeff Romm, 2004. "Assessing the price effects of flood hazard disclosure under the California natural hazard disclosure law (AB 1195)," Journal of Environmental Planning and Management, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 47(1), pages 137-162.
  29. Simon Luechinger, 2009. "Valuing Air Quality Using the Life Satisfaction Approach," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(536), pages 482-515, 03.
  30. Bayer, Patrick & Keohane, Nathaniel & Timmins, Christopher, 2009. "Migration and hedonic valuation: The case of air quality," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 1-14, July.
  31. Nick Carroll & Paul Frijters & Michael Shields, 2009. "Quantifying the costs of drought: new evidence from life satisfaction data," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 22(2), pages 445-461, April.
  32. Welsch, Heinz, 2002. "Preferences over Prosperity and Pollution: Environmental Valuation Based on Happiness Surveys," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 55(4), pages 473-94.
  33. Paul R. Portney, 1994. "The Contingent Valuation Debate: Why Economists Should Care," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 3-17, Fall.
  34. Luechinger, Simon & Raschky, Paul A., 2009. "Valuing flood disasters using the life satisfaction approach," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(3-4), pages 620-633, April.
  35. Matthew Adler & Eric A. Posner, 2008. "Happiness Research and Cost-Benefit Analysis," The Journal of Legal Studies, University of Chicago Press, vol. 37(S2), pages S253-S292, 06.
  36. Paul Dolan & Robert Metcalf, 2008. "Comparing willingness-to-pay and subjective well-being in the context of non-market goods," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 28504, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  37. Daniel Kahneman & Robert Sugden, 2005. "Experienced Utility as a Standard of Policy Evaluation," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 32(1), pages 161-181, 09.
  38. Kahneman, Daniel & Ritov, Ilana & Schkade, David A, 1999. "Economic Preferences or Attitude Expressions?: An Analysis of Dollar Responses to Public Issues," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 19(1-3), pages 203-35, December.
  39. Peter A. Diamond & Jerry A. Hausman, 1994. "Contingent Valuation: Is Some Number Better than No Number?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 8(4), pages 45-64, Fall.
  40. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L., 1992. "Valuing public goods: The purchase of moral satisfaction," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 22(1), pages 57-70, January.
  41. Marne Arthaud-day & Joseph Rode & Christine Mooney & Janet Near, 2005. "The Subjective Well-being Construct: A Test of its Convergent, Discriminant, and Factorial Validity," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 74(3), pages 445-476, December.
  42. Brookshire, David S, et al, 1985. "A Test of the Expected Utility Model: Evidence from Earthquake Risks," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 93(2), pages 369-89, April.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:bsl:wpaper:2009/08. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (WWZ)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.