Beyond the Joneses: inter-country income comparisons and happiness
Our paper provides some novel evidence on the burgeoning literature on life satisfaction and relative comparisons by showing that in the last 30 years comparisons with the wellbeing of top income countries have generated progressively more negative feelings on a large sample of individuals in the Eurobarometer survey. The paper contributes in two main directions: (i) it shows that countries, and not just neighbors, can be reference groups; (ii) it documents a globalization effect by which distant countries become progressively closer and comparisons among them more intense and relevant. Our findings may be interpreted in support of the well known hypothesis that migratory decisions are affected by the gap in economic wellbeing between origin and destination country since they document that such gap affects individual life satisfaction.
|Date of creation:||Dec 2010|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca, Edificio U9, Viale dell'Innovazione, 10, 20126 Milano|
Phone: 0039 02 6448 6540
Web page: http://www.econometica.it
More information through EDIRC
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.:
- Shiqing Jiang & Ming Lu & Hiroshi Sato, 2008. "Happiness in the dual society of urban China:Hukou identity, horizontal inequality and heterogeneous reference," LICOS Discussion Papers 22308, LICOS - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance, KU Leuven.
- Arie Kapteyn & James P. Smith & Arthur van Soest, 2007.
"Vignettes and Self-Reports of Work Disability in the United States and the Netherlands,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 97(1), pages 461-473, March.
- Kapteyn, A. & Smith, J.P. & van Soest, A.H.O., 2007. "Vignettes and self-reports of work disability in the United States and the Netherlands," Other publications TiSEM 17902a1e-7cbb-4f3f-a772-e, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
- Ernst Fehr & Alexander Klein & Klaus M Schmidt, 2007. "Fairness and Contract Design," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 75(1), pages 121-154, 01.
- Fehr, Ernst & Klein, Alexander & Schmidt, Klaus M., 2005. "Fairness and Contract Design," Discussion Paper Series of SFB/TR 15 Governance and the Efficiency of Economic Systems 67, Free University of Berlin, Humboldt University of Berlin, University of Bonn, University of Mannheim, University of Munich.
- Fehr, Ernst & Klein, Alexander & Schmidt, Klaus M., 2007. "Fairness and contract design," Munich Reprints in Economics 20618, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
- Luca Corazzini & Marco Faravelli & Luca Stanca, 2010. "A Prize To Give For: An Experiment on Public Good Funding Mechanisms," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(547), pages 944-967, 09.
- Lucca Corazzini & Marco Faravelli & Lucca Stanca, 2007. "A Prize to Give for: An Experiment on Public Good Funding Mechanisms," ESE Discussion Papers 159, Edinburgh School of Economics, University of Edinburgh.
- Luca Corazzini & Marco Faravelli & Luca Stanca, 2007. "A Prize to Give for: An Experiment on Public Good Funding Mechanisms," Working Papers 108, University of Milano-Bicocca, Department of Economics, revised 2007.
- Stephen G. Donald & Kevin Lang, 2007. "Inference with Difference-in-Differences and Other Panel Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 89(2), pages 221-233, May.
- Robert J. MacCulloch & Rafael Di Tella & Andrew J. Oswald, 2001. "Preferences over Inflation and Unemployment: Evidence from Surveys of Happiness," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(1), pages 335-341, March.
- DiTella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "Preferences over inflation and unemployment: Evidence from surveys of happiness," ZEI Working Papers B 03-2001, University of Bonn, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies.
- AndrewE. Clark & Claudia Senik, 2010. "Who Compares to Whom? The Anatomy of Income Comparisons in Europe," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(544), pages 573-594, 05.
- Andrew E. Clark & Claudia Senik, 2009. "Who compares to whom? The anatomy of income comparisons in Europe," PSE Working Papers halshs-00586036, HAL.
- Clark, Andrew E. & Senik, Claudia, 2009. "Who Compares to Whom? The Anatomy of Income Comparisons in Europe," IZA Discussion Papers 4414, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Andrew E. Clark & Claudia Senik, 2010. "Who compares to whom? The anatomy of income comparisons in Europe," PSE - Labex "OSE-Ouvrir la Science Economique" halshs-00754447, HAL.
- Clark, Andrew E. & Senik, Claudia, 2009. "Who Compares to Whom? The Anatomy of Income Comparisons in Europe," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Docweb) 0907, CEPREMAP.
- Rafael Di Tella & Robert J. MacCulloch & Andrew J. Oswald, 2003. "The Macroeconomics of Happiness," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 809-827, November.
- Di Tella, R. & MacCulloch, R.J.: Oswald, A.J., 1997. "The Macroeconomics of Happiness," Papers 19, Centre for Economic Performance & Institute of Economics.
- Di Tella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert J. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "The Macroeconomics of Happiness," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 615, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
- DiTella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert & Oswald, Andrew J., 1999. "The macroeconomics of happiness," ZEI Working Papers B 03-1999, University of Bonn, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies.
- Frey, Bruno S & Stutzer, Alois, 2000. "Happiness, Economy and Institutions," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 110(466), pages 918-938, October.
- Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, "undated". "Happiness, Economy and Institutions," IEW - Working Papers 015, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
- Bruno S. Frey & Alois Stutzer, 2000. "Happiness, Economy and Institutions," CESifo Working Paper Series 246, CESifo Group Munich.
- Aekapol Chongvilaivan & Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2014. "Do Different Work Characteristics Have Different Distributional Impacts on Job Satisfaction? A Study of Slope Heterogeneity in Workers’ Well-Being," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 52(3), pages 426-444, 09.
- Todaro, Michael P, 1969. "A Model for Labor Migration and Urban Unemployment in Less Developed Countries," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 59(1), pages 138-148, March.
- Christopher P. Barrington-Leigh & John F. Helliwell, 2008. "Empathy and Emulation: Life Satisfaction and the Urban Geography of Comparison Groups," NBER Working Papers 14593, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Stefan Boes & Rainer Winkelmann, 2010. "The Effect of Income on General Life Satisfaction and Dissatisfaction," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 95(1), pages 111-128, January.
- Borjas, G.J., 1999. "Economic Research on the Determinants of Immigration. Lesons for the European Union," Papers 438, World Bank - Technical Papers.
- David Dorn & Justina Fischer & Gebhard Kirchgässner & Alfonso Sousa-Poza, 2008. "Direct democracy and life satisfaction revisited: new evidence for Switzerland," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 227-255, June.
- Cruces, Guillermo & Perez-Truglia, Ricardo & Tetaz, Martin, 2013. "Biased perceptions of income distribution and preferences for redistribution: Evidence from a survey experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 100-112.
- Cruces, Guillermo & Perez Truglia, Ricardo & Tetaz, Martin, 2011. "Biased Perceptions of Income Distribution and Preferences for Redistribution: Evidence from a Survey Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 5699, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Guillermo Cruces & Ricardo Pérez Truglia & Martín Tetaz, 2012. "Biased Perceptions of Income Distribution and Preferences for Redistribution: Evidence from a Survey Experiment," CEDLAS, Working Papers 0138, CEDLAS, Universidad Nacional de La Plata.
- Aqib Aslam & Luisa Corrado, 2012. "The geography of well-being," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(3), pages 627-649, May.
- Harris, John R & Todaro, Michael P, 1970. "Migration, Unemployment & Development: A Two-Sector Analysis," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 60(1), pages 126-142, March.
- Rees, Albert, 1993. "The Role of Fairness in Wage Determination," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(1), pages 243-252, January.
- Ferrer-i-Carbonell, Ada, 2005. "Income and well-being: an empirical analysis of the comparison income effect," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 89(5-6), pages 997-1019, June.
- Borjas, George J., 1999. "The economic analysis of immigration," Handbook of Labor Economics,in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 28, pages 1697-1760 Elsevier. Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:ent:wpaper:wp25. 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: (Matteo Rizzolli)
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.