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Satisfaction with job and income among older individuals across European countries

  • Bonsang Eric
  • Soest Arthur van

    (ROA rm)

Using data on individuals of age 50 and older from 11 European countries, we analyzetwo economic aspects of subjective well-being of older Europeans: satisfaction withhousehold income, and job satisfaction. Both have been shown to contribute substantiallyto overall well-being (satisfaction with life or happiness). We use anchoring vignettes tocorrect for potential differences in response scales across countries.The results highlight a large variation in self-reported income satisfaction, which ispartly explained by differences in response scales. When differences in response scalesare eliminated, the cross country differences are quite well in line with differences inan objective measure of purchasing power of household income. There are commonfeatures in the response scale differences in job satisfaction and income satisfaction.French respondents tend to be critical in both assessments, while Danish and Dutchrespondents are always on the optimistic end of the spectrum. Moreover, correcting forresponse scale differences decreases the cross-country association between satisfactionwith income and job satisfaction among workers.

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File URL: http://digitalarchive.maastrichtuniversity.nl/fedora/objects/guid:966b2a8f-a260-43ca-821b-7d4bdb7753d6/datastreams/ASSET1/content
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Paper provided by Maastricht University, Research Centre for Education and the Labour Market (ROA) in its series ROA Research Memorandum with number 011.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:unm:umaror:2010011
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  1. Bernard M. S. van Praag & P. Frijters & Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell, 2001. "The Anatomy of Subjective Well-Being," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 265, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  2. Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2001. "The Changing Distribution of Job Satisfaction," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 36(1), pages 1-30.
  3. Eric Bonsang & Arthur Soest, 2012. "Satisfaction with Social Contacts of Older Europeans," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 105(2), pages 273-292, January.
  4. Angelini, V.; & Cavapozzi, D.; & Corazzini L.; & Paccagnell O.;, 2011. "Do Danes and Italians Rate Life Satisfaction in the Same Way? Using Vignettes to Correct for Individual-Specific Scale Biases," Health, Econometrics and Data Group (HEDG) Working Papers 11/20, HEDG, c/o Department of Economics, University of York.
  5. Freeman, Richard B, 1978. "Job Satisfaction as an Economic Variable," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 68(2), pages 135-41, May.
  6. Liam Delaney & Colm Harmon & Arie Kapteyn & Arthur Van Soest & James P Smith, 2008. "Validating the Use of Vignettes for Subjective Threshold Scales," Working Papers 200808, School of Economics, University College Dublin.
  7. Karl Kosloski & David Ekerdt & Stanley DeViney, 2001. "The Role of Job-Related Rewards in Retirement Planning," Journals of Gerontology: Series B, Gerontological Society of America, vol. 56(3), pages P160-P169.
  8. Clark, Andrew E. & Oswald, Andrew J., 1996. "Satisfaction and comparison income," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(3), pages 359-381, September.
  9. Andrew Clark & Yannis Georgellis & Peter Sanfey, . "Job Satisfaction, Wage changes and Quits: Evidence from Germany," Economics and Finance Discussion Papers 98-06, Economics and Finance Section, School of Social Sciences, Brunel University.
  10. Kristensen, Nicolai & Johansson, Edvard, 2008. "New evidence on cross-country differences in job satisfaction using anchoring vignettes," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 96-117, February.
  11. Andrew E. Clark & Paul Frijters & Michael A. Shields, 2008. "Relative Income, Happiness, and Utility: An Explanation for the Easterlin Paradox and Other Puzzles," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 46(1), pages 95-144, March.
  12. Peggy Schyns, 2002. "Wealth Of Nations, Individual Income andLife Satisfaction in 42 Countries:A Multilevel Approach," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 60(1), pages 5-40, December.
  13. Drakopoulos, S. A. & Theodossiou, I., 1997. "Job satisfaction and target earnings," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 18(6), pages 693-704, November.
  14. Teresa Bago d'Uva & Eddy Van Doorslaer & Maarten Lindeboom & Owen O'Donnell, 2008. "Does reporting heterogeneity bias the measurement of health disparities?," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 17(3), pages 351-375.
  15. Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell & Bernard M.S. van Praag, 2002. "The subjective costs of health losses due to chronic diseases. An alternative model for monetary appraisal," Health Economics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(8), pages 709-722.
  16. Agar Brugiavini & Tullio Jappelli & Guglielmo Weber, 2002. "The Survey on Health, Aging and Wealth," CSEF Working Papers 86, Centre for Studies in Economics and Finance (CSEF), University of Naples, Italy.
  17. Andrew Clark, . "Job Satisfaction and Gender. Why are Women so Happy at Work?," Economics Discussion Papers 415, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
  18. Bernard M. S. van Praag & Nico L. van der Sar, 1988. "Household Cost Functions and Equivalence Scales," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 23(2), pages 193-210.
  19. Skalli, Ali & Theodossiou, Ioannis & Vasileiou, Efi, 2008. "Jobs as Lancaster goods: Facets of job satisfaction and overall job satisfaction," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 37(5), pages 1906-1920, October.
  20. Sousa-Poza, Alfonso & Sousa-Poza, Andres A., 2000. "Well-being at work: a cross-national analysis of the levels and determinants of job satisfaction," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 29(6), pages 517-538, November.
  21. Andrew E. Clark, 2004. "What makes a good job? Evidence from OECD countries," DELTA Working Papers 2004-28, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  22. George J. Borjas, 1979. "Job Satisfaction, Wages, and Unions," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 14(1), pages 21-40.
  23. Wadensjö, Eskil, 2006. "Part-Time Pensions and Part-Time Work in Sweden," IZA Discussion Papers 2273, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  24. Tsakloglou, Panos, 1996. "Elderly and Non-elderly in the European Union: A Comparison of Living Standards," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 42(3), pages 271-91, September.
  25. Chang-ming Hsieh, 2004. "Income and Financial Satisfaction among Older Adults in the United States," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 66(3), pages 249-266, May.
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