Sociability, Altruism and Subjective Well-Being

43 Pages Posted: 7 Apr 2013

See all articles by Leonardo Becchetti

Leonardo Becchetti

University of Rome Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics

Luisa Corrado

University of Rome Tor Vergata Department of Economics and Finance

Pierluigi Conzo

University of Turin - Department of Economics and Statistics; Collegio Carlo Alberto

Date Written: March 29, 2013

Abstract

We provide non experimental evidence of the relevance of sociability on subjective wellbeing by investigating the determinants of life satisfaction on a large sample of Europeans aged above 50. We document that voluntary work, religious attendance, helping friends/neighbours and participation to community-related organizations affect positively and significantly life satisfaction. We illustrate the different impact that some sociability variables have on eudaimonic versus cognitive measures of subjective wellbeing. Our empirical findings discriminate among other regarding and self-regarding preferences as rationales explaining such behaviour. We document that different combinations between actions and motivations have different impact on life satisfaction thereby providing support for the relevance of these specific “contingent goods” and to the literature of procedural utility. Our findings are confirmed in robustness checks including refinements of the dependent variable, instrumental variables and sensitivity analysis on departures from the exogeneity assumption.

Keywords: sociability, altruism, other-regarding activities, other regarding motivations, life satisfaction, subjective well-being

JEL Classification: A13, D13, D64

Suggested Citation

Becchetti, Leonardo and Corrado, Luisa and Conzo, Pierluigi, Sociability, Altruism and Subjective Well-Being (March 29, 2013). CEIS Working Paper No. 270. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2241622 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2241622

Leonardo Becchetti (Contact Author)

University of Rome Tor Vergata - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Via Columbia, 2
I-00133 Rome
Italy

Luisa Corrado

University of Rome Tor Vergata Department of Economics and Finance ( email )

Via Columbia n.2
Rome, rome 00100
Italy

Pierluigi Conzo

University of Turin - Department of Economics and Statistics ( email )

Campus Luigi Einaudi
Lungo Dora Siena 100 A
Torino, Torino 10153
Italy
011/6703892 (Phone)
011/6703895 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.unito.it/unitoWAR/page/dipartimenti4/D031/D031_personale_batch_BasicBook_Docenti_IT7?id=4

Collegio Carlo Alberto ( email )

Piazza Arbarello, 8
Torino, 10122
Italy

HOME PAGE: http://www.carloalberto.org/people/faculty/affiliates/pierluigi-conzo/

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