Economic Growth Evens-Out Happiness: Evidence from Six Surveys

Posted: 12 Mar 2014

See all articles by Andrew Clark

Andrew Clark

Paris School of Economics (PSE); IZA Institute of Labor Economics

Sarah Fleche

Paris School of Economics (PSE)

Claudia Senik

Paris School of Economics (PSE)

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: February 2014

Abstract

In spite of the great U-turn that saw income inequality rise in Western countries in the 1980s, happiness inequality has dropped in countries that have experienced income growth (but not in those that did not). Modern growth has reduced the share of both the "very unhappy" and the "perfectly happy". The extension of public amenities has certainly contributed to this greater happiness homogeneity. This new stylized fact comes as an addition to the Easterlin paradox, offering a somewhat brighter perspective for developing countries.

Keywords: Happiness, inequality, economic growth, development, Easterlin paradox

JEL Classification: D31, D6, I3, O15

Suggested Citation

Clark, Andrew Eric and Fleche, Sarah and Senik, Claudia, Economic Growth Evens-Out Happiness: Evidence from Six Surveys (February 2014). SOEPpaper No. 633. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2406936

Andrew Eric Clark (Contact Author)

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

IZA Institute of Labor Economics

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Sarah Fleche

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

Claudia Senik

Paris School of Economics (PSE) ( email )

48 Boulevard Jourdan
Paris, 75014 75014
France

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