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Environmental Quality and Life Satisfaction: Evidence Based on Micro-Data

Author

Listed:
  • Jérôme Silva

    (OECD)

  • Femke de Keulenaer

    (Gallup Europe)

  • Nick Johnstone

    (OECD)

Abstract

Environmental conditions are likely to have an effect on people’s sense of life satisfaction, both directly and indirectly. In recent years there has been a burgeoning literature assessing the relationship between measures of environmental quality and subjective well-being. This type of studies can be a useful input into the setting of policy priorities. In this paper, the effects of individual and contextual factors on satisfaction with environmental quality and life satisfaction are assessed, using micro-data from a broad cross-section of OECD and non-OECD countries collected in the framework of the Gallup World Poll. In the analysis it is found that actual and perceived environmental quality has a significant effect on life satisfaction, with the magnitude being approximately half that of self-reported health status. Les conditions environnementales peuvent affecter, directement et indirectement, la satisfaction individuelle. Durant les dernières années s’est développée une littérature économique explorant les relations entre mesures de la qualité de l’environnement et mesures du bien-être subjectif des populations. Les travaux de ce type peuvent être utiles dans l’élaboration des priorités politiques. Nous explorons dans cet article les effets des facteurs individuels et contextuels sur la satisfaction par rapport à la qualité de l’environnement et au bien être subjectif, en utilisant des données individuelles collectées par Gallup au sein d’un large panel de pays membres et non-membres de l’OCDE. L’analyse montre que la qualité de l’environnement a un effet significatif sur la satisfaction individuelle, dont la magnitude est d’environ la moitié de celle de l’effet de la santé subjective.

Suggested Citation

  • Jérôme Silva & Femke de Keulenaer & Nick Johnstone, 2012. "Environmental Quality and Life Satisfaction: Evidence Based on Micro-Data," OECD Environment Working Papers 44, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:envaaa:44-en
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/5k9cw678dlr0-en
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    Cited by:

    1. d'Agostino, Giorgio & Scarlato, Margherita, 2012. "Inclusive Institutions, Innovation and Economic Growth: Estimates for European Countries," MPRA Paper 43098, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    2. repec:ces:ifodic:v:11:y:2013:i:2:p:19094731 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Bodo Knoll & Hans Pitlik & Martin Rode, 2013. "Economic Freedom, Money and Happiness – Why Deregulation Matters Beyond its Wealth Enhancing Effect," ifo DICE Report, ifo Institute - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 11(2), pages 35-42, 07.
    4. Tiziana Laureti, 2014. "Life satisfaction and environmental conditions in Italy: a pseudo-panel approach," Discussion Papers 2014/192, Dipartimento di Economia e Management (DEM), University of Pisa, Pisa, Italy.
    5. Brown, Zachary S. & Oueslati, Walid & Silva, Jérôme, 2016. "Links between urban structure and life satisfaction in a cross-section of OECD metro areas," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 129(C), pages 112-121.
    6. Jones, Benjamin A., 2017. "Invasive Species Impacts on Human Well-being Using the Life Satisfaction Index," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 250-257.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    air pollution; bien-être subjectif; life satisfaction; local environmental quality; pollution de l’air; qualité de l’environnement; satisfaction individuelle; subjective well-being;

    JEL classification:

    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • Q51 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Valuation of Environmental Effects
    • Q53 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling

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