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Are there Regional Variations in the Psychological Cost of Unemployment in South Africa?

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  • Nattavudh Powdthavee

    (The University of Warwick)

Abstract

Are certain groups of unemployed individuals hurt less by unemployment than others? This paper is an attempt to test the hypothesis that non- pecuniary costs of unemployment may vary between societies with different unemployment rates. Using cross-sectional data from the SALDRU93 survey, we show that individuals’ reported well-being levels are inversely related to unemployment for South African adults as to be expected in richer countries. Reported well-being levels are shown to be associated negatively with regional unemployment rates for the employed. However, unemployment appears to hurt less for the individual if unemployment rates in the society are high.

Suggested Citation

  • Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2003. "Are there Regional Variations in the Psychological Cost of Unemployment in South Africa?," Labor and Demography 0310006, EconWPA, revised 28 Oct 2003.
  • Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpla:0310006
    Note: Type of Document - pdf; prepared on WinXP; pages: 33; figures: 2
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    File URL: http://econwpa.repec.org/eps/lab/papers/0310/0310006.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Kingdon, Geeta Gandhi & Knight, John, 2007. "Community, comparisons and subjective well-being in a divided society," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 69-90, September.
    2. Adrian Chadi, 2014. "Regional unemployment and norm-induced effects on life satisfaction," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 46(3), pages 1111-1141, May.
    3. Nattavudh Powdthavee, 2005. "Unhappiness and Crime: Evidence from South Africa," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 72(3), pages 531-547, August.
    4. Andrew E. Clark & Orsolya Lelkes, 2005. "Deliver us from evil: religion as insurance," Working Papers halshs-00590570, HAL.
    5. Aysit Tansel & H. Mehmet Taşçı, 2010. "Hazard Analysis of Unemployment Duration by Gender in a Developing Country: The Case of Turkey," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 24(4), pages 501-530, December.
    6. David G. Blanchflower & Andrew J. Oswald & Bert Van Landeghem, 2009. "Imitative Obesity and Relative Utility," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 7(2-3), pages 528-538, 04-05.
    7. David G. Blanchflower, 2009. "International Evidence on Well-Being," NBER Chapters,in: Measuring the Subjective Well-Being of Nations: National Accounts of Time Use and Well-Being, pages 155-226 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. José Ignacio Gimenez-Nadal & José Alberto Molina & Raquel Ortega, 2010. "Unemployment and Time Use: Evidence from the Spanish Time Use Survey," Documentos de Trabajo dt2010-02, Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y Empresariales, Universidad de Zaragoza.
    9. Kingdon, Geeta Gandhi & Knight, John, 2007. "Community, comparisons and subjective well-being in a divided society," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 69-90, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Happiness; Quality of Life; Unemployment; Social Norm; South Africa;

    JEL classification:

    • J60 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - General
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General
    • O55 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Africa

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