Well-Being and War

14 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2013

Date Written: October 22, 2013


Happiness research has dealt with a great number of determinants of well-being but has neglected the effect of war. Wars drastically reduce people’s happiness. The large psychic costs of soldiers, the suffering of civilians, and the material destruction are well documented. An important issue for happiness research is how to calculate the forgone well-being of the people killed in war. Wars may also increase happiness by providing shared experiences, raising national pride, and “ennobling” people. “Combat flow” increases an individual soldier’s subjective happiness. Deep issues are elicited regarding what type of happiness is legitimate.

Suggested Citation

Frey, Bruno S., Well-Being and War (October 22, 2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2343618 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2343618

Bruno S. Frey (Contact Author)

CREMA ( email )

Südstrasse 11
Zurich, CH 8008
+41 44 380 00 78 (Phone)

University of Basel ( email )

Peter Merian-Weg 6
Basel, 4002

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