nep-hap New Economics Papers
on Economics of Happiness
Issue of 2020‒10‒26
four papers chosen by

  1. Does the unemployment rate moderate the well-being disadvantage of the unemployed? Within-region estimates from the European Social Survey By Tamás Hajdu; Gábor Hajdu
  2. "Regional borders, local unemployment and happiness" By Antonio Di Paolo; Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell
  3. Asylum migration in OECD countries: In search of lost well-being By Jordi Paniagua; Jesús Peiró-Palomino; Andrés J. Picazo-Tadeo
  4. Encouraging Brilliance in the Workplace: The Case of the Petroleum Sector in Egypt By Radi, Sherihan

  1. By: Tamás Hajdu (Institute of Economics, Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, 1097 Budapest, Tóth Kálmán u. 4, Hungary); Gábor Hajdu (Institute for Sociology, Centre for Social Sciences, 1097 Budapest, Tóth Kálmán u. 4, Hungary)
    Abstract: Using eight waves of the European Social Survey, we analysed how the local unemployment rate influences the well-being disadvantages of the unemployed. We estimate region fixed effects and slopes models that, unlike the standard region fixed effects approach, provide an unbiased estimate of the cross-level interaction term (the term between being unemployed and the unemployment rate). We find that the satisfaction of unemployed people (relative to employed people) is lower when the unemployment rate is higher. The results are similar for the depression scores, but the differences are smaller and insignificant regarding the happiness scores. Our results do not support the “social norm of unemployment” hypothesis that states that the negative impacts of unemployment are smaller if the unemployment rate is higher. In contrast, these results are in line with the argument that worse re-employment perspectives in high-unemployment regions may be particularly harmful to unemployed people. We note that these results do not contradict the claim that, in regions with a weaker social norm to work, unemployed people may be more satisfied. Instead, the results suggest that the unemployment rate is not a good proxy for the social norm to work.
    Keywords: unemployment; subjective well-being; unemployment rate; life satisfaction; happiness; European Social Survey
    JEL: I31 J64
    Date: 2020–09
  2. By: Antonio Di Paolo (AQR-IREA Research Group, University of Barcelona. Department of Econometrics, Statistics and Applied Economics. Av. Diagonal 690, 08034 Barcelona, Spain.); Ada Ferrer-i-Carbonell (Institute of Economic Analysis (IAE-CSIC), Barcelona GSE, IZA, and MOVE.)
    Abstract: In this paper we provide novel evidence on the effect of local unemployment rate on life satisfaction. We investigate how changes in unemployment rate in local administrative areas affect subjective well-being in Germany, allowing for the presence of spatial spillovers and considering the role played by regional borders. The results indicate that higher unemployment in the own local area of residence has a negative effect on satisfaction. Similarly, individuals’ happiness negatively correlates with the unemployment rate in contiguous local areas, but only if these areas are located in the same Federal State as the one where the individual lives. These results are robust to a variety of specifications, definitions, sample restrictions and estimation methods. Heterogeneity analysis reveals that these negative effects of local unemployment rate are larger for individuals with stronger ties to the job market and less secure jobs. This points to worries about own job situation as the main driver of individuals’ dislike for living in areas with high unemployment rate and tight labour markets. Consistently with this, the same asymmetric effect of local unemployment rate of surrounding areas is replicated when life satisfaction is replaced with a proxy for perceived job security as outcome variable.
    Keywords: Life satisfaction, Local unemployment, Spatial spillovers, Neighbouring areas, Regional borders JEL classification: I31, J64, J28, R23
    Date: 2020–10
  3. By: Jordi Paniagua (University of Valencia (Spain)); Jesús Peiró-Palomino (University of Valencia (Spain) and INTECO); Andrés J. Picazo-Tadeo (University of Valencia (Spain) and INTECO)
    Abstract: Alongside the economic determinants and unobserved structural forces that drive migration flows, asylum migration faces additional natural and man-made hazards, which fall in the broad category of well-being. This paper estimates the effect of a composite well-being indicator on asylum migration flows with a structural grav- ity equation. The paper starts by augmenting the gravity model to explain asylum flow with country-pair relative well-being, relocation costs and multilateral resistance. Taking the OECD Better Life Index as a starting point, we then combine Data Envel- opment Analysis and Multi-Criteria-Decision-Making to construct a multidimensional well-being indicator that groups 23 raw indicators into a single composite indicator with 10 consistently comparable dimensions across countries. Then, using a panel of bilateral asylum flows in OECD countries, we are able to obtain theoretically-grounded and consistent estimates. Results reveal that the composite indicator of well-being has a significant effect, although only certain dimensions of well-being act as push and pull factors.
    Keywords: asylum-seekers; well-being; composite indicator; gravity equation, multi- lateral resistance
    JEL: F22 I31
    Date: 2020–10
  4. By: Radi, Sherihan
    Abstract: This research investigates the impact of five pillars (growth – happiness – abundance- significance - meaning) on encouraging brilliance in the workplace. It used a mixed methods approach to collect information related to the research. The researcher found that the five pillars (growth – happiness – abundance - significance - meaning) have a significant impact on encouraging brilliance in the workplace. Insights from this study can be used to benefit the development of this research line in future.
    Keywords: Brilliance, growth, happiness, abundance, significance, meaning, workplace.
    JEL: J00 J28
    Date: 2020–08–20

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