Born To Be Mild? Cohort Effects Don’t (Fully) Explain Why Well-Being Is U-Shaped in Age
Andrew Clark ()
No 3170, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)
The statistical analysis of cross-section data very often reveals a U-shaped relationship between subjective well-being and age. This paper uses fourteen waves of British panel data to distinguish between two potential explanations of this shape: a pure life-cycle or aging effect, and a fixed cohort effect depending on year of birth. Panel analysis controlling for fixed effects continues to produce a U-shaped relationship between well-being and age, although this U-shape is flatter for life satisfaction than for the GHQ measure of mental well-being. The pattern of the estimated cohort effects also differs between the two well-being measures and, to an extent, by demographic group. In particular, those born earlier report more positive GHQ scores, controlling for their current age; this phenomenon is especially prevalent for women.
Keywords: subjective well-being; cohorts; fixed effects; panel data (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C23 I3 J11 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-age and nep-hap
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (37) Track citations by RSS feed
Published in: Mariano Rojas (ed.), The Economics of Happiness: How the Easterlin Paradox Transformed our Understanding of Well-being and Progress, New York: Springer, 2019
Downloads: (external link)
Working Paper: Born to Be Mild? Cohort Effects Don’t (Fully) Explain Why Well-Being Is U-Shaped in Age (2019)
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.
Export reference: BibTeX
RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan)
Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:iza:izadps:dp3170
Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany
Access Statistics for this paper
More papers in IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA) IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany. Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Holger Hinte ().