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Back to baseline in Britain: Adaptation in the BHPS

Andrew Clark () and Yannis Georgellis ()

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Abstract: We look for evidence of adaptation of well-being to major life events in sixteen waves of British panel data. We find that, with the exception of unemployment, adaptation to other life events including marriage, divorce, birth of a child and widowhood is rapid and complete. These findings are remarkably similar to those found in previous analysis of German panel data. Equally, the time profiles of well-being as measured by life satisfaction data are very close to those from the analysis of a twelve-item scale of psychological functioning. As such, the phenomenon of adaptation may be a general one, rather than being only found in German data or using single-item measures. Last, we uncover some systematic differences in adaptation profiles according to "Big Five" personality measures.

Keywords: Life Satisfaction; anticipation; adaptation; baseline satisfaction; labour market and life events (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2010-01
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Working Paper: Back to Baseline in Britain: Adaptation in the BHPS (2012) Downloads
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