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Religiosity as a determinant of happiness

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  • Gundlach, Erich
  • Opfinger, Matthias

Abstract

We find a U-shaped relation between happiness and religiosity in cross-country panel data after controlling for income levels. At a given level of income, the same level of happiness can be reached with high and low levels of religiosity, but not with intermediate levels. A rise in income causes an increase in happiness along with a decline of religiosity. Our interpretation of the empirical results is that the indifference curves for religiosity and other commodities of the utility function are hump-shaped.

Suggested Citation

  • Gundlach, Erich & Opfinger, Matthias, 2011. "Religiosity as a determinant of happiness," GIGA Working Papers 163, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:gigawp:163
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    Cited by:

    1. Matthias Opfinger, 2014. "‘United in Diversity’---Does Social Diversity Increase Subjective?," Research Papers in Economics 2014-10, University of Trier, Department of Economics.
    2. Owen, Ann L. & Handley-Miner, Isaac, 2015. "Race, Class, Gender, and the Happiness of College Students," MPRA Paper 67078, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Zhang, Yinjunjie & Xu, Zhicheng Phil & Palma, Marco A., 2017. "Misclassification Errors of Subjective Well-being: A New Approach to Mapping Happiness," 2017 Annual Meeting, July 30-August 1, Chicago, Illinois 258553, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    4. Opfinger, Matthias & Gundlach, Erich, 2011. "Religiosity as a determinant of happiness," Open Access Publications from Kiel Institute for the World Economy 48360, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW Kiel).
    5. Kenneth Harttgen & Matthias Opfinger, 2014. "National Identity and Religious Diversity," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 67(3), pages 346-367, August.
    6. Falco, Chiara & Rotondi, Valentina, 2016. "The Less Extreme, the More You Leave: Radical Islam and Willingness to Migrate," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 88(C), pages 122-133.
    7. Hübler Olaf, 2020. "The Gender-specific Role of Body Weight for Health, Earnings and Life Satisfaction in Piecewise and Simultaneous Equations Models," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), De Gruyter, vol. 240(5), pages 653-676, October.
    8. Chiara FALCO & Valentina ROTONDI, 2016. "The Less Extreme, the More You Leave: Radical Islam and Willingness to Migrate," Departmental Working Papers 2016-04, Department of Economics, Management and Quantitative Methods at Università degli Studi di Milano.
    9. Aistė Dirzytė & Ona Gražina Rakauskienė & Vaida Servetkienė, 2016. "Household income and satisfaction with life: cognitive – emotional impact paradox," Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Issues, VsI Entrepreneurship and Sustainability Center, vol. 4(2), pages 198-210, December.
    10. Basedau, Matthias & Gobien, Simone & Prediger, Sebastian, 2017. "The Ambivalent Role of Religion for Sustainable Development: A Review of the Empirical Evidence," GIGA Working Papers 297, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
    11. Maryam Dilmaghani, 2018. "Religiosity and Subjective Wellbeing in Canada," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 19(3), pages 629-647, March.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    happiness; religiosity; utility function; long-run development;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion
    • O11 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Macroeconomic Analyses of Economic Development

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