nep-hap New Economics Papers
on Economics of Happiness
Issue of 2023‒07‒31
two papers chosen by
Viviana Di Giovinazzo
Università degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca

  1. Is There An Income-Happiness Puzzle in China? A National Survey, 2003-2021 By Yang, Jinyang
  2. Feelings in Travel Episodes and Extreme Temperatures By Belloc, Ignacio; Gimenez-Nadal, José Ignacio; Molina, José Alberto

  1. By: Yang, Jinyang
    Abstract: This study investigates the income-happiness puzzle in China by examining the trends in happiness and economic growth over the past two decades. It is the first long-term study in China to utilize a consistent national representative survey in the new century. Using data from the Chinese General Social Survey (CGSS) waves 2003-2021, the study reveals a substantial increase in average happiness alongside steady income growth. Income growth contributes to approximately 40% of rural residents' happiness improvement and 25% of that of urban residents during this period. I find the effect of income is positive and robust when examined using both regional aggregate data and individual data. Furthermore, the study finds that the effect of relative income, measured by local average income, does not have a significant impact on individual happiness. The research also highlights the persistent urban-rural happiness gap and explores the distinct happiness-age curves observed between urban and rural residents.
    Keywords: Subjective Well-Being, Economic Growth, Easterlin Paradox, Happiness-Age Curve
    JEL: H0 I30 O10 J10
    Date: 2023
  2. By: Belloc, Ignacio (University of Zaragoza); Gimenez-Nadal, José Ignacio (University of Zaragoza); Molina, José Alberto (University of Zaragoza)
    Abstract: In recent decades, global warming and its relationship to individual well-being has concerned researchers and policy makers, with research focusing on the consequences of global warming on well-being. In this paper, we analyse the relationship between weather conditions and the feelings reported by individuals during daily travel episodes. We use data from the Well-Being module of the American Time Use Survey for the years 2010, 2012, 2013, and 2021, together with county-level weather information. Our findings indicate an association between extreme temperatures and certain measures of affective well-being while commuting, and notable differences are found, depending on the main travel purpose. In the current context of global warming, when daily temperatures are expected to rise in the future and heat waves will become more frequent, our findings indicate that certain travel activities could be more sensitive to rising temperatures, from an affective perspective, which may help to complement the well-being consequences of global warming.
    Keywords: well-being, travel episode, purpose, extreme temperatures, time use, ATUS
    JEL: R40 I10 J22
    Date: 2023–06

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