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Economic growth evens-out happiness: evidence from six surveys

Clark, Andrew E. and Flèche, Sarah and Senik, Claudia (2014) Economic growth evens-out happiness: evidence from six surveys. CEP Discussion Papers, CEPDP1306. Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.

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Abstract

In spite of the great U-turn that saw income inequality rise in Western countries in the 1980s, happiness inequality has fallen in countries that have experienced income growth (but not in those that did not). Modern growth has reduced the share of both the “very unhappy” and the “perfectly happy”. Lower happiness inequality is found both between and within countries, and between and within individuals. Our cross-country regression results argue that the extension of various public goods helps to explain this greater happiness homogeneity. This new stylised fact arguably comes as a bonus to the Easterlin paradox, offering a somewhat brighter perspective for developing countries.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL: http://cep.lse.ac.uk/_new/publications/series.asp?...
Additional Information: © 2014 The Authors
Divisions: Centre for Economic Performance
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D3 - Distribution > D31 - Personal Income, Wealth, and Their Distributions
D - Microeconomics > D6 - Welfare Economics
I - Health, Education, and Welfare > I3 - Welfare and Poverty > I31 - General Welfare; Basic Needs; Living Standards; Quality of Life; Happiness
O - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth > O1 - Economic Development > O15 - Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration
Sets: Research centres and groups > Centre for Economic Performance (CEP)
Series: Working Papers > CEP Discussion Papers
Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2014 09:56
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2014 09:56
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council
URI: http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/60530

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