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Heterogeneous Self-employment and Subjective Well-Being. Evidence from Latin America

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  • Cortés Aguilar Alexandra

    (Escuela de Economía y Administración, Universidad Industrial de Santander.)

  • Teresa Garcia-Muñoz

    (Globe and Universidad de Granada.)

  • Ana I. Moro Egido

    (Department of Economic Theory and Economic History, University of Granada.)

Abstract

This paper analyzes the relationship between labor status and individual satisfaction in Latin America. Existing evidence for developed countries shows that the self-employed report higher job satisfaction than the employed. The evidence, however, is less conclusive in terms of lifesatisfaction. Moreover, for Latin American countries, the evidence shows that self-employed individuals report lower life-satisfaction than employed individuals do. To clarify the effect of selfemployment on satisfaction, we use the Latinobarómetro survey 2007 for eighteen Latin American and Caribbean countries, considering the category self-employment as a heterogeneous category. Additionally, we control for the distinction between necessity and opportunity self-employed. Contrary to existing evidence, we find that not all self-employed individuals are more satisfied than employed individuals. Specifically, we find evidence revealing that, compared to workers in paid employment (i) precarious self-employed workers are as satisfied as the employed with their life but less with job and household income; (ii) self-employed professionals are more satisfied than the employed only with their incomes; (iii) business owners are more satisfied with their lives, income and job; and (iv) self-employed famers and fisherman are less satisfied with their jobs and income.

Suggested Citation

  • Cortés Aguilar Alexandra & Teresa Garcia-Muñoz & Ana I. Moro Egido, 2013. "Heterogeneous Self-employment and Subjective Well-Being. Evidence from Latin America," ThE Papers 13/05, Department of Economic Theory and Economic History of the University of Granada..
  • Handle: RePEc:gra:wpaper:13/05
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Labor informality; voluntary vs. involuntary self-employment; life and job satisfaction;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy
    • O17 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Formal and Informal Sectors; Shadow Economy; Institutional Arrangements

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