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Life Satisfaction and the Human Development Index Across the World

Author

Listed:
  • Rémi Yin

    (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])

  • Anthony Lepinteur

    (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])

  • Andrew Clark

    (PSE - Paris School of Economics - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement, PJSE - Paris Jourdan Sciences Economiques - UP1 - Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne - ENS Paris - École normale supérieure - Paris - PSL - Université Paris sciences et lettres - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - ENPC - École des Ponts ParisTech - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement)

  • Conchita d'Ambrosio

    (University of Luxembourg [Luxembourg])

Abstract

We use annual data on over 150 countries between 2005 and 2018 to look at the relationship between subjective well-being (both cognitive and affective) and the Human Development Index (HDI). The HDI appears to be more closely related to cognitive than affective well-being. We also consider the relationships between the three HDI components (the Income, Health and Education Indices) and well-being, and find that, on average, the Income Index has the strongest predictive power. Importantly, we find that the three HDI components only matter equally in Western and rich countries. Our analysis contributes to the discussion about cultural sensitivity in paradigms of societal development in two ways. We first show that differences in preferences towards development aims exist. Second, we propose a weighting procedure for a culturally-sensitive version of the HDI.

Suggested Citation

  • Rémi Yin & Anthony Lepinteur & Andrew Clark & Conchita d'Ambrosio, 2021. "Life Satisfaction and the Human Development Index Across the World," PSE Working Papers halshs-03174513, HAL.
  • Handle: RePEc:hal:psewpa:halshs-03174513
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