The Happiness of Economists: Estimating the Causal Effect of Studying Economics on Subjective Well-Being
Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf - Department of Economics; German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin)
Ruhr Universität Bochum - Faculty of Economics
This is the first paper that studies the causal effect of studying economics on subjective well being. Based on a survey among 918 students of economics and other social sciences, we estimate the effects of studying in the different fields on individual life satisfaction. Controlling for personal characteristics we apply innovative instrumental variable methods developed in labor and conflict economics. We find a positive relationship between the study of economics and individual well-being. Additionally, we also find that income, future job chances, and political attitudes are the most important drivers of happiness for participants of our survey.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 24
Keywords: Happiness, Economists, Students
JEL Classification: A11, A13, I21, I31
Date posted: February 25, 2010 ; Last revised: August 18, 2014
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