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Individual Welfare and Subjective Well-Being : Commentary Inspired by Sacks, Stevenson and Wolfers

  • Hammond, Peter J.

    (University of Warwick)

  • Liberini, Federica

    (University of Warwick)

  • Proto, Eugenio

    (University of Warwick)

Sacks, Stevenson and Wolfers (2010) question earlier results like Easterlin's showing that long-run economic growth often fails to improve individuals'average reports of their own subjective well-being (SWB). We use World Values Survey data to establish that the proportion of individuals reporting happiness level h, and whose income falls below any xed threshold, always diminishes as h increases. The implied positive association between income and reported happiness suggests that it is possible in principle to construct multi-dimensional summary statistics based on reported SWB that could be used to evaluate economic policy

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File URL: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/workingpapers/2011/twerp_957.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Warwick, Department of Economics in its series The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) with number 957.

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Date of creation: 2011
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Handle: RePEc:wrk:warwec:957
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  1. Sacks, Daniel W. & Stevenson, Betsey & Wolfers, Justin, 2010. "Subjective Well-Being, Income, Economic Development and Growth," IZA Discussion Papers 5230, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  2. Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2008. "Economic Growth and Subjective Well-Being: Reassessing the Easterlin Paradox," NBER Working Papers 14282, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. David Canning, 2007. "Valuing Lives Equally and Welfare Economics," PGDA Working Papers 2707, Program on the Global Demography of Aging.
  4. Bleichrodt, Han & Quiggin, John, 1997. "Characterizing QALYs under a General Rank Dependent Utility Model," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 151-65, November.
  5. Hammond, Peter J, 1976. "Equity, Arrow's Conditions, and Rawls' Difference Principle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(4), pages 793-804, July.
  6. Weymark, John A, 1985. "Money-Metric Utility Functions," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 26(1), pages 219-32, February.
  7. 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.
  8. Nicholas Oulton, 2007. "Chain indices of the cost of living and the path-dependence problem: an empirical solution," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19718, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  9. Bleichrodt, Han & Wakker, Peter & Johannesson, Magnus, 1997. "Characterizing QALYs by Risk Neutrality," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 107-14, November.
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