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Subjective and physiological measures of well-being: an exploratory analysis using birth-cohort data

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Abstract

We use a rich longitudinal data set following a cohort of Swedish women from age 10 to 49 to analyse the effects of birth and early-life conditions on adulthood outcomes. These latter include both well-being and the stress hormone cortisol. Employment and marital status are important adult determinants of well-being. Log family income and absence from school also predict adult well-being, although their importance falls when controlling for adult and birth characteristics. Among the birth characteristics, we find that high birth weight (>4.3kg) affects adult well-being. We predict the level of adult cortisol only poorly, and suggest that the relationship between life satisfaction and cortisol is non-monotonic: both high and low cortisol are negatively correlated with life satisfaction. The results from an OLS life satisfaction regression and a multinomial logit of high or low cortisol (as compared to medium) are more similar to each other.

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  • Andrén, Daniela & Clark, Andrew E & D´Ambrosio, Conchita & Karlsson, Sune & Pettersson, Nicklas, 2017. "Subjective and physiological measures of well-being: an exploratory analysis using birth-cohort data," Working Papers 2017:8, Örebro University, School of Business.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:oruesi:2017_008
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    1. Richard Layard & Andrew E. Clark & Francesca Cornaglia & Nattavudh Powdthavee & James Vernoit, 2014. "What Predicts a Successful Life? A Life‐course Model of Well‐being," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(580), pages 720-738, November.
    2. Ed Diener, 1994. "Assessing subjective well-being: Progress and opportunities," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 31(2), pages 103-157, February.
    3. van Buuren, Stef & Groothuis-Oudshoorn, Karin, 2011. "mice: Multivariate Imputation by Chained Equations in R," Journal of Statistical Software, Foundation for Open Access Statistics, vol. 45(i03).
    4. Flèche, Sarah & Lekfuangfu, Warn & Clark, Andrew E., "undated". "The Long-Lasting Effects of Family and Childhood on Adult Wellbeing: Evidence from British Cohort Data," CEPREMAP Working Papers (Docweb) 1803, CEPREMAP.
    5. Richard Layard & Andrew E. Clark & Cornaglia Francesca & Powdthavee Nattavudh, 2014. "What Predicts a Successful Life? A Life-course Model of Well-being," Post-Print halshs-01109062, HAL.
    6. Janet Currie & Maya Rossin‐Slater, 2015. "Early‐Life Origins of Life‐Cycle Well‐Being: Research and Policy Implications," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 34(1), pages 208-242, January.
    7. Paul Frijters & David W. Johnston & Michael A. Shields, 2014. "Does Childhood Predict Adult Life Satisfaction? Evidence from British Cohort Surveys," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 124(580), pages 688-719, November.
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    1. Subjective and physiological measures of well-being: an exploratory analysis using birth-cohort data
      by maximorossi in NEP-LTV blog on 2018-02-21 12:41:45

    More about this item

    Keywords

    life satisfaction; cortisol; birth-cohort data; adult; child and birth outcomes; multivariate imputation by chained equations;

    JEL classification:

    • A12 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Relation of Economics to Other Disciplines
    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being

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