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Dissatisfied with Life or with Being Interviewed?: Happiness and Motivation to Participate in a Survey

  • Adrian Chadi

Information on the number of interviewer contacts allows insights into how people's responses to questions on happiness are connected to the difficulty of reaching potential participants. Using the paradata of the German Socio-Economic Panel Study (SOEP), this paper continues such research by revealing a strong link between respondent motivation and reported happiness. Analyses of responses by future non-respondents substantiate this finding and shed light on a key question for empirical research on subjective well-being, which is whether the unhappy tend to avoid survey participation or whether the unwilling might respond more negatively when being asked about their satisfaction with life.

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File URL: http://www.diw.de/documents/publikationen/73/diw_01.c.440845.de/diw_sp0639.pdf
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Paper provided by DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) in its series SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research with number 639.

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Length: 33 p.
Date of creation: 2014
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp639
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Phone: xx49-30-89789-671
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Web page: http://www.diw.de/en/soep
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  17. Cheti Nicoletti & Franco Peracchi & Vincenzo Atella, 2005. "Survey Response and Survey Characteristics: Micro-level Evidence from the European Commission Household Panel," CEIS Research Paper 64, Tor Vergata University, CEIS.
  18. Christoph Wunder & Andrea Wiencierz & Johannes Schwarze & Helmut Küchenhoff, 2013. "Well-Being over the Life Span: Semiparametric Evidence from British and German Longitudinal Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(1), pages 154-167, March.
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  21. Robert Metcalfe & Nattavudh Powdthavee & Paul Dolan, 2011. "Destruction and Distress: Using a Quasi‐Experiment to Show the Effects of the September 11 Attacks on Mental Well‐Being in the United Kingdom," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 121(550), pages F81-F103, February.
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  31. Denis Gerstorf & Nilam Ram & Guy Mayraz & Mira Hidajat & Ulman Lindenberger & Gert G. Wagner & Jürgen Schupp, 2010. "Late-Life Decline in Well-Being across Adulthood in Germany, the UK, and the US: Something Is Seriously Wrong at the End of Life," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 286, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
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  33. Adrian Chadi, 2012. "I would really love to participate in your survey! Bias problems in the measurement of well-being," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(4), pages 3111-3119.
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