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The Impact of Institutions and Development on Happiness

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Abstract

This paper demonstrates that institutional factors influence the subjective well-being of individuals differently in rich versus poor countries. A lower level of corruption, a more democratic government and better civil rights increase the well-being of individuals in rich countries, whereas an increase in per capita income has no impact. On the contrary, in poor countries the extent of corruption, democracy and civil rights have no influence on happiness, but an increase in per capita income impacts happiness positively. This stark contrast may be due to the difference of preferences over income and institutional factors.

Suggested Citation

  • Duha T. Altindag & Junyue Xu, 2009. "The Impact of Institutions and Development on Happiness," Departmental Working Papers 2009-17, Department of Economics, Louisiana State University.
  • Handle: RePEc:lsu:lsuwpp:2009-17
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    Cited by:

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    2. Bergh, Andreas & Mirkina, Irina & Nilsson, Therese, 2013. "More Open – Better Governed? Evidence from High- and Low-income Countries," Working Paper Series 997, Research Institute of Industrial Economics.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • D73 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - Bureaucracy; Administrative Processes in Public Organizations; Corruption

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