Happiness Across Cultures

Type Book Section - Views of Happiness and Quality of Life in Non-Western Cultures. Life Satisfaction in Malawi
Title Happiness Across Cultures
Volume 6
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2012
Page numbers 271-292
URL http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-94-007-2700-7_19
Measuring people’s wellbeing and what influences it is important for the social sciences. Some economists have also become interested in this question, using information on self-reported wellbeing, happiness and life satisfaction. The method that economists use is straightforward and provides researchers with correlations that generally confirm their expectations. It is only in the last decade or so that happiness equations have been estimated for low and middle-income countries with any regularity. This chapter draws on previous work on Malawi and tests whether the likelihood of crime has any impact on life satisfaction. The results confirm many of the broader findings in the wellbeing literature between life satisfaction and household assets, consumption, economic activity, gender and marital status. We also find that happiness decreased as the probability of violent crime increased.

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