IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/ces/ceswps/_5099.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

Happiness of Economists

Author

Listed:
  • Lars P. Feld
  • Sarah Necker
  • Bruno S. Frey

Abstract

We study the importance of economists’ professional situation toward their life satisfaction based on a unique survey of mostly academic economists. On average, economists report to be highly happy with life. Satisfaction is positively related to spending more time on doing research. The lack of a tenured position decreases satisfaction. However, the extent to which the uncertainty created by the tenure system affects satisfaction varies with the contract terms. The effect is stronger if the contract expires in the near future or cannot be extended. Publication success has no effect if it is controlled for academic rank and the contract duration. The finding suggests that publications are rather a means to an end, e.g., to acquire a tenured position. While the perceived level of external pressure also has no impact, the perceived change of pressure in recent years is positively related to economists’ life satisfaction. An explanation is that economists have accepted a high level of pressure when entering academia but are not willing to cope with the recent increase.

Suggested Citation

  • Lars P. Feld & Sarah Necker & Bruno S. Frey, 2014. "Happiness of Economists," CESifo Working Paper Series 5099, CESifo.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_5099
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://www.cesifo.org/DocDL/cesifo1_wp5099.pdf
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Paul Frijters, 2004. "How Important is Methodology for the estimates of the determinants of Happiness?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(497), pages 641-659, July.
    2. Matthias Benz & Bruno S. Frey, 2008. "Being Independent is a Great Thing: Subjective Evaluations of Self‐Employment and Hierarchy," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 75(298), pages 362-383, May.
    3. Bruno S. Frey & Susanne Neckermann, 2009. "Academics Appreciate Awards - A New Aspect of Incentives in Research," CESifo Working Paper Series 2531, CESifo.
    4. Keith A. Bender & John S. Heywood, 2006. "Job Satisfaction Of The Highly Educated: The Role Of Gender, Academic Tenure, And Earnings," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 53(2), pages 253-279, May.
    5. Dolan, Paul & Peasgood, Tessa & White, Mathew, 2008. "Do we really know what makes us happy A review of the economic literature on the factors associated with subjective well-being," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 94-122, February.
    6. Bruno S. Frey & Reiner Eichenberger, 1993. "American and European Economics and Economists," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(4), pages 185-193, Fall.
    7. Ai, Chunrong & Norton, Edward C., 2003. "Interaction terms in logit and probit models," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 80(1), pages 123-129, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Bruno Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2010. "Happiness and public choice," Public Choice, Springer, vol. 144(3), pages 557-573, September.
    2. Michael Lokshin & Nithin Umapathi & Stefano Paternostro, 2006. "Robustness of subjective welfare analysis in a poor developing country: Madagascar 2001," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(4), pages 559-591.
    3. Le Maux, Benoît & Necker, Sarah & Rocaboy, Yvon, 2019. "Cheat or perish? A theory of scientific customs," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(9), pages 1-1.
    4. Saku Aura & Gregory D. Hess, 2010. "What’S In A Name?," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 48(1), pages 214-227, January.
    5. Vani Borooah, 2005. "How to assess happiness? A tale of three measures," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 12(3), pages 191-194.
    6. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Jungmin Lee, 2007. "Stressed Out on Four Continents: Time Crunch or Yuppie Kvetch?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 374-383, May.
    7. Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2009. "How important is rank to individual perception of economic standing? A within-community analysis," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 7(3), pages 225-248, September.
    8. Daniel Finke & Thomas König, 2009. "Why risk popular ratification failure? A comparative analysis of the choice of the ratification instrument in the 25 Member States of the EU," Constitutional Political Economy, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 341-365, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    happiness; academic labor market; extrinsic and intrinsic motivation; publish or perish;

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • A11 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Role of Economics; Role of Economists
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_5099. 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: (Klaus Wohlrabe). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/cesifde.html .

    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 CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc 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 RePEc Author Service 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.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.