nep-hap New Economics Papers
on Economics of Happiness
Issue of 2009‒10‒17
five papers chosen by
Viviana Di Giovinazzo
University of Milano-Bicocca

  1. Getting a Job through Voluntary Associations: the Role of Network and Human Capital Creation By Giacomo degli Antoni
  2. Time and Income Poverty: An Interdependent Multidimensional Poverty Approach with German Time Use Diary Data By Joachim Merz; Tim Rathjen
  3. How important is human capital? A quantitative theory assessment of world income inequality By Andrés Erosa; Tatyana Koreshkova; Diego Restuccia
  4. The dynamics of the Russian lifestyle during transition: Changes in food, alcohol and cigarette consumption By Herzfeld, Thomas; Huffman, Sonya K.; Oskam, Arie; Rizov, Marian
  5. Informal Caring-Time and Caregiver Satisfaction By Marcén, Miriam; Molina, José Alberto

  1. By: Giacomo degli Antoni (University of Milan - Bicocca)
    Abstract: The present paper draws on an original dataset collected by the author to investigate if: i)the relational network and the human capital developed by unemployed volunteers through their associational membership are useful in finding a job; ii)the likelihood to get a job is higher for volunteers who take part in activities capable of increasing social networks and human capital. Data show that a considerable percentage of volunteers (24%) who were out of work when they joined their association obtained a job thanks to their associational participation. In particular, personal declarations of unemployed respondents reveal that 12% of them found a job thanks to the skills developed by working in the association, 10% thanks to information received by people met through the association and 2% for other reasons concerning the associational membership. Moreover, the econometric analysis shows that some activities related to the creation of social network (the frequency of participation in informal meetings and work groups) and human capital (the attendance at training courses) positively and significantly affect the probability to get a job if unemployed.
    Keywords: Voluntary Associations; Job Opportunities; Social Network; Human Capital
    JEL: L31 A14 J64 D85 J24
    Date: 2009–09
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:ent:wpaper:wp14&r=hap
  2. By: Joachim Merz; Tim Rathjen
    Abstract: Income as the traditional one dimensional measure in well-being and poverty analyses is extended in recent studies by a multidimensional poverty concept. Though this is certainly a progress, however, two important aspects are missing: time as an important dimension and the interdependence of the often only separately counted multiple poverty dimensions. Our paper will contribute to both aspects: First, we consider time - and income - both as striking and restricting resources of everyday activities and hence account for time and income as important multiple poverty dimensions. Second, the interdependence of the poverty dimensions will be evaluated by the German population to allow an advanced approach to understand possible substitution effects and the respective trade offs between the dimensions. Referring to the time dimension, we follow Sen's capability approach with its freedom of the living conditions' choice and social exclusion and argue, that restricted time might exclude from social participation. In particular, restricted genuine, personal leisure time (not entire leisure time) in particular is associated with a restricted social participation. The crucial question then is how to measure the substitution between income and such genuine leisure time. In our analysis we consider the country population's valuation with data from the German Socio-Economic Panel and estimate the substitution by a CES-utility function of general utility/satisfaction. Given this quantification we disentangle time, income and interdependent multidimensional poverty regimes characterising the working poor. In addition, we quantify further socio-economic influences for each interdependent multidimensional poverty regime by a multinomial logit based on time use diary data of the German Time Use Study 2001/02. One striking result for Germany: the substitution between time and income is significant and we find an important fraction of time poor who are unable to substitute their time deficit by income. These poor people are ignored within the poverty and well-being as well as the time crunch and time famine discussion so far.
    Keywords: Interdependent multidimensional time and income poverty, time and income substitution, extended economic well-being, satisfaction, CES utility function estimation, working poor, German Socio-Economic Panel, German Time Use Surveys 2001/02
    JEL: D31 D13 J22
    Date: 2009
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:diw:diwsop:diw_sp215&r=hap
  3. By: Andrés Erosa (IMDEA Ciencias Sociales); Tatyana Koreshkova (Concordia University and CIREQ); Diego Restuccia (University of Toronto)
    Abstract: We develop a quantitative theory of human capital investments in order to evaluate the magnitude of cross-country differences in total factor productivity (TFP) that explains the variation in per-capita incomes across countries. We build a heterogeneous-agent economy with cross-sectional variation in ability, schooling, and expenditures on schooling quality. By embedding our analysis in a growth model with tradable and non-tradable sectors, we model sectorial productivity differences across countries, as documented in Hsieh and Klenow (2007). The parameters governing human capital production and random ability and taste processes are restricted by a set of cross-sectional data moments such as variances and intergenerational correlations of earnings and schooling, as well as slope coefficient and R2 in a Mincer regression. Our main finding is that human capital accumulation strongly amplifies TFP differences across countries: To explain a 20-fold difference in the output per worker the model requires a 5-fold difference in the TFP of the tradable sector, versus an 18-fold difference if human capital is fixed across countries. Moreover, we find that sectorial productivity differences play a prominent role in quantitative implications of the theory.
    Date: 2009–09–30
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:imd:wpaper:wp2009-11&r=hap
  4. By: Herzfeld, Thomas; Huffman, Sonya K.; Oskam, Arie; Rizov, Marian
    Abstract: This paper examines changes in aspects of the lifestyle of Russian adults between 1994 and 2004. We present evidence on the impact of individual as well as regional characteristics on changes in fat, protein, alcohol and cigarette consumption, and on diet’s diversity. The results from a dynamic econometric model suggest that among individual determinants, initial levels of consumption, gender, holding a university degree, household income changes and having access to a garden plot have a significant impact on the changes in consumption behavior in Russia. Regarding the macroeconomic variables, inflation has a significant impact on changes in alcohol and cigarettes consumption, while unemployment changes significantly impact smoking behavior. Analysis of subsamples conditional on initial consumption behavior reveals significant differences in consumption patterns, which is important for effective policy targeting different population groups in achieving healthier lifestyle choices in Russia.
    Keywords: food consumption, smoking, alcohol, economic transition, Russia
    Date: 2009–10–14
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:isu:genres:13116&r=hap
  5. By: Marcén, Miriam; Molina, José Alberto
    Abstract: We study the effect that the care decision process has on the amount of caring-time and on informal caregiver satisfaction. We develop a theoretical framework in which we compare three two-stage sequential games, each of which corresponds to a different care decision (family, caregiver, and recipient). We find cases of overprovision of informal care in both the family and the recipient decision models, since the caregiver is obliged to spend more time than he/she would prefer. We then use the Spanish Survey of Informal Assistance for the Elderly (2004) to study the relationship between the care decision processes and the time that informal caregivers devote to care activities, with the results confirming our theoretical hypotheses. We also find that different care decision processes imply differences in the informal caregivers' satisfaction, with intensive caregivers being less likely to have greater satisfaction.
    Keywords: Informal Care; Informal Caregiver Satisfaction; Care Decision Process; Two-stage Sequential Game
    JEL: J10 C70 I10
    Date: 2009–10–08
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:pra:mprapa:17739&r=hap

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