Inside the Life Satisfaction Blackbox
Luisa Corrado () and
Paola Samà ()
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Paola Samà: University of Rome Tor Vergata
No 116-2012, AICCON Working Papers from Associazione Italiana per la Cultura della Cooperazione e del Non Profit
We propose a measure of life satisfaction, alternative to the standard synthetic cognitive wellbeing question, based on the specific contribution of eleven life satisfaction sub-components (including satisfaction about the past, life opportunities, hope for the future, vitality, control over one’s on life, meaning of life). The alternative measure is either estimated as a latent factor, obtained as a simple unweighted average from the above mentioned sub-components, or extracted with principal component analysis. We document that the new dependent variable fits much better standard socio-demographic controls and corrects the Danish life satisfaction bias in the direction suggested by the vignette approach. These findings do not reject our theoretical assumption that the alternative measures derived from the life satisfaction sub-components are less noisy and less culturally biased and therefore perform better than the standard self-reported life satisfaction. The straightforward policy advice of the paper is to introduce the above mentioned sub-components (similarly to what happens with sub-questions used to calculate the General Health Questionnaire score) in an additional question to measure more effectively subjective wellbeing.
Keywords: life satisfaction; country bias; measurement error; multiple indicators. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: I30 I31 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 29 pages
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Working Paper: Inside the Life Satisfaction Blackbox (2013)
Working Paper: Inside the Life Satisfaction Blackbox (2012)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:ris:aiccon:2012_116
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