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Resilience to Economic Shocks and the Long Reach of Childhood Bullying

  • Powdthavee, Nattavudh


    (London School of Economics)

This paper investigates whether people's ability to withstand and adapt to one of the most important economic shocks – job loss – is determined early on in childhood. Using nationally representative longitudinal data that tracks almost 3,000 children into adulthood, we show that the negative effect of unemployment on mental health and life satisfaction is almost four times larger for workers who had been bullied a lot in their early life. We also find zero adaptation to unemployment for these individuals over time. Although the results should be viewed as illustrative and more research is needed, their potential implications for economists and policy makers are discussed.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 6945.

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Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp6945
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  1. Andrew E. Clark & Ed Diener & Yannis Georgellis & Richard E. Lucas, 2007. "Lags and Leads in Life Satisfaction: A Test of the Baseline Hypothesis," CEP Discussion Papers dp0836, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  2. Flavio Cunha & James Heckman & Susanne Schennach, 2010. "Estimating the technology of cognitive and noncognitive skill formation," CeMMAP working papers CWP09/10, Centre for Microdata Methods and Practice, Institute for Fiscal Studies.
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  4. Rafael Di Tella & John Haisken-De New & Robert MacCulloch, 2007. "Happiness Adaptation to Income and to Status in an Individual Panel," NBER Working Papers 13159, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Powdthavee, Nattavudh & van den Berg, Bernard, 2011. "Putting different price tags on the same health condition: Re-evaluating the well-being valuation approach," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 1032-1043.
  6. Alois Stutzer, . "The Role of Income Aspirations in Individual Happiness," IEW - Working Papers 124, Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich.
  7. Luis Rayo & Gary S. Becker, 2007. "Evolutionary Efficiency and Happiness," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115, pages 302-337.
  8. Oswald, Andrew J. & Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2008. "Does happiness adapt? A longitudinal study of disability with implications for economists and judges," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(5-6), pages 1061-1077, June.
  9. Graham, Liam & Oswald, Andrew J., 2006. "Hedonic Capital," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 745, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  10. Loewenstein, George & Ubel, Peter A., 2008. "Hedonic adaptation and the role of decision and experience utility in public policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 92(8-9), pages 1795-1810, August.
  11. Oswald, Andrew J. & Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2007. "Obesity, Unhappiness, and The Challenge of Affluence: Theory and Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 2717, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  12. James J. Heckman & Jora Stixrud & Sergio Urzua, 2006. "The Effects of Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities on Labor Market Outcomes and Social Behavior," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 24(3), pages 411-482, July.
  13. Richard Layard, 2006. "Happiness and public policy: a challenge to the profession," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 47483, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  14. Perez-Truglia, Ricardo, 2012. "On the causes and consequences of hedonic adaptation," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 33(6), pages 1182-1192.
  15. Andrew J. Oswald & Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2007. "Review 1: Obesity, Unhappiness, and The Challenge of Affluence: Theory and Evidence," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(521), pages 441-454, 06.
  16. Erzo F. P. Luttmer, 2005. "Neighbors as Negatives: Relative Earnings and Well-Being," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(3), pages 963-1002.
  17. Paul Frijters & David W. Johnston & Michael A. Shields, 2011. "Life Satisfaction Dynamics with Quarterly Life Event Data," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 113(1), pages 190-211, 03.
  18. Powdthavee, Nattavudh, 2009. "What happens to people before and after disability? Focusing effects, lead effects, and adaptation in different areas of life," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 69(12), pages 1834-1844, December.
  19. Nattavudh Powdthavee & James Vernoit, 2012. "The transferable scars: a longitudinal evidence of psychological impact of past parental unemployment on adolescents in the United Kingdom," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 51510, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  20. Andrew E. Clark & Orsolya Lelkes, 2005. "Deliver us from evil: religion as insurance," PSE Working Papers halshs-00590570, HAL.
  21. Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2012. "Jobless, Friendless and Broke: What Happens to Different Areas of Life Before and After Unemployment?," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 79(315), pages 557-575, 07.
  22. Andrew E. Clark & Orsolya Lelkes, 2005. "Deliver us from evil: religion as insurance," Working Papers halshs-00590570, HAL.
  23. Flavio Cunha & James J. Heckman, 2008. "Formulating, Identifying and Estimating the Technology of Cognitive and Noncognitive Skill Formation," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(4).
  24. Clark, Andrew E & Oswald, Andrew J, 1994. "Unhappiness and Unemployment," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 104(424), pages 648-59, May.
  25. Brown, Sarah & Taylor, Karl, 2008. "Bullying, education and earnings: Evidence from the National Child Development Study," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 387-401, August.
  26. Richard Layard, 2006. "Happiness and Public Policy: a Challenge to the Profession," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 116(510), pages C24-C33, 03.
  27. Brunello, Giorgio & Schlotter, Martin, 2011. "Non Cognitive Skills and Personality Traits: Labour Market Relevance and their Development in Education & Training Systems," IZA Discussion Papers 5743, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  28. Winkelmann, Liliana & Winkelmann, Rainer, 1998. "Why Are the Unemployed So Unhappy? Evidence from Panel Data," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 65(257), pages 1-15, February.
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