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Does the Internet make people happier?

Thierry Pénard (), Nicolas Poussing and Raphael Suire ()

No 2011-41, LISER Working Paper Series from LISER

Abstract: As people are spending more time online, it is important to evaluate the impact of Internet use on individual well-being. Internet use yields direct utility and economic returns (e.g. better job, higher productivity) that may increase life sa-tisfaction. But the Internet might also have detrimental effects (addiction, social isolation, e.g.). This paper empirically examines the relation between Internet use and subjective well-being. Using Luxemburgish data from a European so-cial survey, we find evidence that non users are less satisfied in their life than Internet users. This result holds when we control for socio-demographic charac-teristics, social capital, values and beliefs, and health and income. Moreover, the positive influence of Internet use is stronger for low income and young in-dividuals. These findings suggest that public policy aiming to reduce the digital divide are socially desirable..

Keywords: Internet; happiness; well-being; digital divide; social capital; social values (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: A12 D12 D60 H40 L86 Z13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hap, nep-ict and nep-soc
Date: 2011-08
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (4) Track citations by RSS feed

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Related works:
Journal Article: Does the Internet make people happier? (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: Does the Internet make people happier? (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: Does the Internet make people happier ? (2011) Downloads
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