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Cross-country determinants of life satisfaction: exploring different determinants across groups in society

Bjørnskov, Christian, Dreher, Axel and Fischer, Justina A. V. (2006) Cross-country determinants of life satisfaction: exploring different determinants across groups in society. PEPP (21). Suntory and Toyota International Centres for Economics and Related Disciplines, London, UK.

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This paper explores a wide range of cross-country determinants of life satisfaction exploiting a database of 90,000 observations in 70 countries. We distinguish four groups of aggregate variables as potential determinants of satisfaction: political, economic, institutional, and human development and culture. We use ordered probit to investigate the importance of these variables on individual life satisfaction and test the robustness of our results with Extreme Bounds Analysis. The results show that only a small number of factors, such as openness, business climate, postcommunism, the number of chambers in parliament, Christian majority, and infant mortality robustly influence life satisfaction across countries while the importance of many variables suggested in the previous literature is not confirmed. This remains largely true when the analysis splits national populations according to gender, income and political orientation also.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2006 the authors
Divisions: STICERD
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
JEL classification: H - Public Economics > H1 - Structure and Scope of Government > H10 - General
I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I3 - Welfare and Poverty > I31 - General Welfare; Basic Needs; Living Standards; Quality of Life; Happiness
H - Public Economics > H4 - Publicly Provided Goods > H40 - General
Date Deposited: 11 Jul 2008 08:24
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 11:38

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