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How happy are my neighbours? Modelling spatial spillover effects of well-being

Thanasis Ziogas, Dimitris Ballas, Sierdjan Koster and Arjen Edzes

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Abstract: This article uses data of subjective Life Satisfaction aggregated to the community level in Canada and examines the spatial interdependencies and spatial spillovers of community happiness. A theoretical model of utility is presented. Using spatial econometric techniques, we find that the utility of community, proxied by subjective measures of life satisfaction, is affected both by the utility of neighbouring communities as well as by the latter's average household income and unemployment rate. Shared cultural traits and institutions may justify such spillovers. The results are robust to the different binary contiguity spatial weights matrices used and to the various econometric models. Clusters of both high-high and low-low in Life Satisfaction communities are also found based on the Moran's I test

Date: 2020-07
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-geo, nep-upt and nep-ure
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Handle: RePEc:arx:papers:2007.11580