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An Integrative Approach to Assess Subjective Well-Being. A Case Study on Romanian University Students

George-Laurentiu Serban-Oprescu (), Silvia Dedu () and Anca-Teodora Serban-Oprescu ()
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George-Laurentiu Serban-Oprescu: Department of Economic Doctrines and Communication, Bucharest University of Economic Studies, 6 Romana Sq., District 1, 010734 Bucharest, Romania
Anca-Teodora Serban-Oprescu: Department of Modern Languages & Business Communication, Bucharest University of Economic Studies, 6 Romana Sq., District 1, 010734 Bucharest, Romania

Sustainability, 2019, vol. 11, issue 6, 1-27

Abstract: Subjective well-being (SWB) has presented long-lasting interest for researchers and the recent focus on the economic approach to SWB led to increased awareness of the topic. Despite the significant number of studies, conceptualizing and assessing SWB, along with finding predictors of SWB, need further empirical exploration. Following this rationale, using statistical and econometric methods (correlation analysis, Principal Component Analysis (PCA), Multinomial Logistic Regression (MLR)) applied on data collected via a survey on students from Bucharest University of Economic Studies (363 respondents), this study explores and provides insights that support a better understanding of defining and measuring SWB. Additionally, the study offers valuable information on the main determinants of SWB for a particular group, in this case, Romanian business students. According to findings, we argue that: (1) when assessing perception of life satisfaction and happiness, Romanian students tend to make slight distinctions between these two concepts; (2) question order effect is not significant, whereas negative sentiments (such as pessimism) impact self-assessment of happiness, but not of life satisfaction; (3) the main predictors for SWB are satisfaction with current activities, level of optimism/pessimism, health, and safety of the neighborhood. This paper proposes a new approach to modeling SWB by MLR, which features expressing the dependent variable with respect to the principal factors obtained by PCA.

Keywords: subjective well-being; happiness; life satisfaction; question order effect; health; income; Romanian students (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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