nep-hap New Economics Papers
on Economics of Happiness
Issue of 2014‒12‒03
five papers chosen by
Viviana Di Giovinazzo
Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca

  1. A Family Affair: Job Loss and the Mental Health of Spouses and Adolescents By Bubonya, Melisa; Cobb-Clark, Deborah A.; Wooden, Mark
  2. Building sustainability through greater happiness By Stefano Bartolini
  3. Bowling Alone or Bowling at All?: The Effect of Unemployment on Social Participation By Lars Kunze; Nicolai Suppa
  4. What Helps Teachers Feel Valued and Satisfied with their Jobs? By OECD
  5. On the misery of losing self-employment By Hetschko, Clemens

  1. By: Bubonya, Melisa (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research); Cobb-Clark, Deborah A. (University of Melbourne); Wooden, Mark (Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research)
    Abstract: This study examines the impact of involuntary job loss on the mental health of family members. Estimates from fixed-effects panel data models, using panel data for Australia, provide little evidence of any negative spillover effect on the mental health of husbands as a result of their wives' job loss. The mental well-being of wives, however, declines following their husbands' job loss, but only if that job loss results in a sustained period of non-employment or if the couple experienced financial hardship or relationship strain prior to the husband's job loss. A negative effect of parental job loss on the mental health of co-resident adolescent children is also found, but appears to be restricted to girls.
    Keywords: unemployment, involuntary job loss, mental health, families, spouses, adolescents, HILDA Survey
    JEL: I31 J10 J65
    Date: 2014–10
  2. By: Stefano Bartolini
    Abstract: The current unsustainable growth of the world economy is largely a consequence of the crisis of social capital experienced by much of the world's population. Declining social capital leads the economies to excessive growth, because people seek economic affluence as compensation for the emotional distress and loss of resources caused by scarce social and affective relationships. To slow down economic growth requires an increase in social capital that is a fundamental contributor to happiness. From a wide range of possible approaches to increasing present happiness, this article suggests policies that would shift the economy to a more sustainable path. It focuses on a more politically sustainable set of proposals for a green ‘new deal’ than some of those currently under discussion.
    Keywords: Common good; environmentalism; ecologism; economic growth; green economy; happiness; negative endogenous growth; private affluence; social capital; social stress; well-being.
    JEL: A13 D63 D90 E20 F01 I31 O10 O40
    Date: 2014–11
  3. By: Lars Kunze; Nicolai Suppa
    Abstract: This article examines the impact of unemployment on social participation for Germany using the German Socio-Economic Panel. We find significant negative, robust and, for some activities, lasting effects of unemployment on social participation. Causality is established by focussing on plant closures as exogenous entries into unemployment. Social norms, labor market prospects and the perception of individual failure are shown to be relevant for explaining these findings. Furthermore, our results not only (i) provide novel insights into the determinants of the unemployed's unhappiness but also (ii) highlight an hitherto unexplored channel through which unemployment influences economic outcomes, namely by altering the long-run level of social capital, and (iii) point to an alternative explanation of unemployment hysteresis based on access to information.
    Keywords: Unemployment, social participation, plant closure, fixed effects, well-being
    JEL: J64 I31
    Date: 2014
  4. By: OECD
    Abstract: <ul> <li> Less than one in three teachers across countries participating in the Teaching and Learning International Survey (TALIS) 2013 believes that the teaching profession is valued by society. </li> <li> Nevertheless, the great majority of teachers in all surveyed countries are happy with their jobs. </li> <li> Challenging classrooms with large proportions of students with behavioural problems and the perception that appraisals and feedback are done simply as administrative tasks are among factors that tend to lower job satisfaction. </li> <li> Collaboration between teachers and positive teacher-student relationships, on the other hand, are among factors that can boost teacher job satisfaction. </li></ul>
    Date: 2014–09
  5. By: Hetschko, Clemens
    Abstract: German panel data is used to show that the decrease in life satisfaction caused by an increase in the probability of losing work is higher when self-employed than when paid employed. Further estimations reveal that becoming unemployed reduces self-employed workers´ satisfaction considerably more than salaried workers´ satisfaction. These results indicate that losing self-employment is an even more harmful life event than losing dependent employment. Monetary and non-monetary reasons seem to account for the difference between the two types of work. Moreover, it originates from the process of losing self-employment and the consequences of unemployment rather than from advantages of self-employment.
    Keywords: life satisfaction,self-employment,probability of losing work,unemployment
    JEL: I31 J24 J65 L26
    Date: 2014

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