Download this Paper Open PDF in Browser

Sun and Water: On a Modulus-Based Measurement of Happiness

Emotion, Vol. 7, pp. 213-218, 2007

6 Pages Posted: 24 May 2008  

Christopher K. Hsee

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business

Ningyu Tang

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Abstract

Most happiness researchers use semantic differential or Likert scales to assess happiness. Such conventionally used scales are susceptible to scale renorming (interpretation of scales differently in different contexts) and can produce a specious relativism effect (e.g., rating a low-income person happier than a high-income person in situations where the low-income person is not happier). Building on related psychophysical measurements, the authors propose a simple, survey-friendly, modulus-based scale of happiness and show that it is less susceptible to specious relativism than conventional rating scales but can still catch genuine relativism (e.g., rating a low-income person to be happier than a high-income person in situations where the low-income person is indeed happier).

Keywords: measurement scale, renorming, scale calibration, happiness

JEL Classification: D81, D11, D12, D91

Suggested Citation

Hsee, Christopher K. and Tang, Ningyu, Sun and Water: On a Modulus-Based Measurement of Happiness. Emotion, Vol. 7, pp. 213-218, 2007. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1133947

Christopher K. Hsee (Contact Author)

University of Chicago - Booth School of Business ( email )

5807 S. Woodlawn Avenue
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

Ningyu Tang

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
70
Rank
281,987
Abstract Views
727