IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/p/pra/mprapa/64700.html
   My bibliography  Save this paper

A life-span perspective on life satisfaction

Author

Listed:
  • Thieme, Paula
  • Dittrich, Dennis Alexis Valin

Abstract

The German population is ageing due to decreasing birth rates and increasing life expectancy. To sustain the German pension system, legal retirement age is increased step by step to 67 years. This raises questions about how to enable and motivate older individuals to work that long. Hence, it is important to understand whether they represent a homogeneous group that can be addressed through specific measures and instruments. Life-span theory points to systematic changes as well as increased heterogeneity with age. For example, work motivation does not generally decline with age but becomes increasingly task-specific, depending on changing life goals and individual adaptation processes in adult development. In this empirical study we analyse age heterogeneity with regard to current life satisfaction and life satisfaction domains (measured as satisfaction with work, income, family and health) that represent personal utilities individuals strive for. For our analysis we use data collected as part of a representative German longitudinal data study (SOEP1). We find increasing heterogeneity in current life satisfaction, satisfaction with work, family life, and health with age. Thus, common mean level analyses on age effects yield only limited informative value. The heterogeneity of older adults should be taken into account when motivating and developing older workers.

Suggested Citation

  • Thieme, Paula & Dittrich, Dennis Alexis Valin, 2015. "A life-span perspective on life satisfaction," MPRA Paper 64700, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:64700
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: https://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/64700/1/MPRA_paper_64700.pdf
    File Function: original version
    Download Restriction: no
    ---><---

    Other versions of this item:

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Daniel W. Sacks & Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2010. "Subjective Well-Being, Income, Economic Development and Growth," NBER Working Papers 16441, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Bruce Headey, 2008. "Life Goals Matter to Happiness: A Revision of Set-Point Theory," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 86(2), pages 213-231, April.
    3. Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2008. "Is well-being U-shaped over the life cycle?," Social Science & Medicine, Elsevier, vol. 66(8), pages 1733-1749, April.
    4. M. Sirgy & Alex Michalos & Abbott Ferriss & Richard Easterlin & Donald Patrick & William Pavot, 2006. "The Qualityity-of-Life (QOL) Research Movement: Past, Present, and Future," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 76(3), pages 343-466, May.
    5. Dan Haybron, 2007. "Life satisfaction, ethical reflection, and the science of happiness," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 99-138, March.
    6. Hausman, Jerry, 2015. "Specification tests in econometrics," Applied Econometrics, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), vol. 38(2), pages 112-134.
    7. Wilkes, Robert E, 1992. "A Structural Modeling Approach to the Measurement and Meaning of Cognitive Age," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 19(2), pages 292-301, September.
    8. Easterlin, Richard A., 2006. "Life cycle happiness and its sources: Intersections of psychology, economics, and demography," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 27(4), pages 463-482, August.
    9. Robert Cummins, 1996. "The domains of life satisfaction: An attempt to order chaos," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 38(3), pages 303-328, January.
    10. Paul Frijters & John P. Haisken-DeNew & Michael A. Shields, 2004. "Money Does Matter! Evidence from Increasing Real Income and Life Satisfaction in East Germany Following Reunification," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 94(3), pages 730-740, June.
    11. Eva M. Berger, 2008. "A Note on the High Stability of Happiness: The Minimal Effects of a Nuclear Catastrophe on Life Satisfaction," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 803, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
    12. Christoph Wunder & Andrea Wiencierz & Johannes Schwarze & Helmut Küchenhoff, 2013. "Well-Being over the Life Span: Semiparametric Evidence from British and German Longitudinal Data," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 95(1), pages 154-167, March.
    13. Dolan, Paul & Layard, Richard & Metcalfe, Robert, 2011. "Measuring subjective well-being for public policy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 35420, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    14. Dolan, Paul & Peasgood, Tessa & White, Mathew, 2008. "Do we really know what makes us happy A review of the economic literature on the factors associated with subjective well-being," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 94-122, February.
    15. MacKinnon, James G. & White, Halbert, 1985. "Some heteroskedasticity-consistent covariance matrix estimators with improved finite sample properties," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 305-325, September.
    16. Sendhil Mullainathan & Marianne Bertrand, 2001. "Do People Mean What They Say? Implications for Subjective Survey Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(2), pages 67-72, May.
    17. Brendan Baird & Richard Lucas & M. Donnellan, 2010. "Life Satisfaction Across the Lifespan: Findings from Two Nationally Representative Panel Studies," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 99(2), pages 183-203, November.
    18. Richard A. Easterlin, 2000. "The Worldwide Standard of Living since 1800," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 14(1), pages 7-26, Winter.
    19. Ruut Veenhoven, 1998. "Two State-Trait Discussions on Happiness. A Reply to Stones et al," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 43(3), pages 211-225, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as


    Cited by:

    1. Pannicke, Nadine & Hagemann, Nina & Purkus, Alexandra & Gawel, Erik, 2015. "Gesellschaftliche Grundfragen der Bioökonomie: Volkswirtschaftliche Mehrwerte und Nachhaltigkeitsherausforderungen einer biobasierten Wirtschaft," UFZ Discussion Papers 7/2015, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), Division of Social Sciences (ÖKUS).

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Dolan, Paul & Metcalfe, Robert, 2012. "The relationship between innovation and subjective wellbeing," Research Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(8), pages 1489-1498.
    2. Terence C. Cheng & Nattavudh Powdthavee & Andrew J. Oswald, 2017. "Longitudinal Evidence for a Midlife Nadir in Human Well‐being: Results from Four Data Sets," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 127(599), pages 126-142, February.
    3. Hania Wu & Tony Tam, 2015. "Economic Development and Socioeconomic Inequality of Well-Being: A Cross-Sectional Time-Series Analysis of Urban China, 2003–2011," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 124(2), pages 401-425, November.
    4. Bert Van Landeghem, 2012. "Panel Conditioning and Self-Reported Satisfaction: Evidence from International Panel Data and Repeated Cross-Sections," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 484, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    5. Lin, Yi-Chen & Hwang, Ruey-Ching & Deng, Wen-Shuenn, 2015. "Heterogeneity in the relationship between subjective well-being and its determinants over the life cycle: A varying-coefficient ordered probit approach," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 49(C), pages 372-386.
    6. Paul Downward & Peter Dawson, 2016. "Is it Pleasure or Health from Leisure that We Benefit from Most? An Analysis of Well-Being Alternatives and Implications for Policy," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 126(1), pages 443-465, March.
    7. David G. Blanchflower, 2020. "Is Happiness U-shaped Everywhere? Age and Subjective Well-being in 132 Countries," NBER Working Papers 26641, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Guglielmo Maria Caporale & Yannis Georgellis & Nicholas Tsitsianis & Ya Ping Yin, 2007. "Income and Happiness across Europe: Do Reference Values Matter?," CESifo Working Paper Series 2146, CESifo.
    9. Susanne Väth & Michael Kirk, 2014. "Do property rights and contract farming matter for rural development? Evidence from a large-scale investment in Ghana," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201416, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    10. Daniel Wheatley & Zhongmin Wu, 2014. "Dual careers, time-use and satisfaction levels: evidence from the British Household Panel Survey," Industrial Relations Journal, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 45(5), pages 443-464, September.
    11. Hilke Brockmann, 2009. "Why Are Middle-Aged People so Depressed?: Evidence from West Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 233, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    12. Eiji Yamamura & Antonio Rodriguez, 2012. "Influence of age of child on differencesinlife satisfaction ofmalesand females: A comparative study among East Asian countries," Development Research Working Paper Series 04/2012, Institute for Advanced Development Studies.
    13. Isilda Mara & Michael Landesmann, 2013. "Do I stay because I am happy or am I happy because I stay? Life satisfaction in migration, and the decision to stay permanently, return and out-migrate," Norface Discussion Paper Series 2013008, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.
    14. Antje Mertens & Miriam Beblo, 2016. "Self-Reported Satisfaction and the Economic Crisis of 2007–2010: Or How People in the UK and Germany Perceive a Severe Cyclical Downturn," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 125(2), pages 537-565, January.
    15. Ólafsdóttir, Thorhildur & Ásgeirsdóttir, Tinna Laufey & Norton, Edward C., 2020. "Valuing pain using the subjective well-being method," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 37(C).
    16. Blanchflower, David G. & Oswald, Andrew J., 2011. "Antidepressants and Age," IZA Discussion Papers 5785, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    17. Clara Viñas-Bardolet & Monica Guillen-Royo & Joan Torrent-Sellens, 2020. "Job Characteristics and Life Satisfaction in the EU: a Domains-of-Life Approach," Applied Research in Quality of Life, Springer;International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies, vol. 15(4), pages 1069-1098, September.
    18. Stefano Bartolini & Ennio Bilancini & Francesco Sarracino, 2013. "Predicting the Trend of Well-Being in Germany: How Much Do Comparisons, Adaptation and Sociability Matter?," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 114(2), pages 169-191, November.
    19. Wunder, Christoph & Heineck, Guido, 2013. "Working time preferences, hours mismatch and well-being of couples: Are there spillovers?," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(C), pages 244-252.
    20. Ferreira, Susana & Akay, Alpaslan & Brereton, Finbarr & Cuñado, Juncal & Martinsson, Peter & Moro, Mirko & Ningal, Tine F., 2013. "Life satisfaction and air quality in Europe," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 1-10.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Life satisfaction; heterogeneity; life-span; older workers; ageing;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
    • M50 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Personnel Economics - - - General

    NEP fields

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:64700. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Joachim Winter). General contact details of provider: https://edirc.repec.org/data/vfmunde.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.