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

Author

Listed:
  • Hammond, Peter J.

    (University of Warwick)

  • Liberini, Federica

    (University of Warwick)

  • Proto, Eugenio

    (University of Warwick)

Abstract

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

Suggested Citation

  • Hammond, Peter J. & Liberini, Federica & Proto, Eugenio, 2011. "Individual Welfare and Subjective Well-Being : Commentary Inspired by Sacks, Stevenson and Wolfers," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 957, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:wrk:warwec:957
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    File URL: https://warwick.ac.uk/fac/soc/economics/research/workingpapers/2011/twerp_957.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    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. Betsey Stevenson & Justin Wolfers, 2008. "Economic Growth and Subjective Well-Being: Reassessing the Easterlin Paradox," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 39(1 (Spring), pages 1-102.
    3. David Canning, 2007. "Valuing Lives Equally and Welfare Economics," PGDA Working Papers 2707, Program on the Global Demography of Aging.
    4. Hammond, Peter J, 1976. "Equity, Arrow's Conditions, and Rawls' Difference Principle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(4), pages 793-804, July.
    5. Bleichrodt, Han & Wakker, Peter & Johannesson, Magnus, 1997. "Characterizing QALYs by Risk Neutrality," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 107-114, November.
    6. Oulton, Nicholas, 2008. "Chain indices of the cost-of-living and the path-dependence problem: An empirical solution," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 144(1), pages 306-324, May.
    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. 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 219-232, February.
    9. Bleichrodt, Han & Quiggin, John, 1997. "Characterizing QALYs under a General Rank Dependent Utility Model," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 15(2), pages 151-165, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Timothy N. Bond & Kevin Lang, 2014. "The Sad Truth About Happiness Scales," NBER Working Papers 19950, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Hammond, Peter J & Liberini, Federica & Proto, Eugenio, 2013. "Do Happier Britons Have More Income? First-Order Stochastic Dominance Relations," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 166, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
    3. Barbara Dluhosch & Daniel Horgos & Klaus Zimmermann, 2014. "Social Choice and Social Unemployment-Income Cleavages: New Insights from Happiness Research," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 15(6), pages 1513-1537, December.

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