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Bias in the Relative Assessment of Happiness,Political Stance, Height and Weight

Eugenio Proto () and Daniel Sgroi

The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) from University of Warwick, Department of Economics

Abstract: Cognitive biases have been a recognised feature of research into human behaviour since at least Kahneman and Tversky’s ground-breaking work of the 1970s. We find that such biases extend into the realm of perceptions about relative happiness and we compare and contrast this phenomenon across three other characteristics : height, weight and political stance. Our findings indicate a powerful and consistent bias in the way individuals perceive their place in the population distribution. In particular, those at extremes perceive a population distribution that is incorrectly and heavily biased towards themselves,irrespective of whether the characteristic is objective and easily observed or not.

Date: 2010
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hap, nep-neu and nep-pol
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:wrk:warwec:943

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