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Pursuit of Happiness (Intro)

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by

Christina Zheng

on 1 April 2014

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Transcript of Pursuit of Happiness (Intro)

What Makes Us Happy?
essential for sustainable development
happier citizens are happier workers
measured by life satisfaction & well-being
recommendations for public policies to enhance well-being
Mental Health & Well-Being
“mental health is the single most important determinant of individual happiness… with huge costs in terms of misery and economic waste” (World Happiness Report 2013)
Literature Review
Money & Well-Being
What is the relationship between money and life satisfaction?
Does money make us happier?
How does inequality affect society?
Variables
obesity
mental illness
median income
inequality
abortion restrictions
Well-Being Across America
Andrew J. Oswald and Stephen Wu
Review of Economics and Statistics, 2011
High Income Improves Evaluation Of Life But Not Emotional Well-Being
Daniel Kahneman and Angus Deaton
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2010
World Happiness Report 2013
Analyzes “international happiness data on how people rate their emotions and their lives as a whole” (2013).
Emphasizes the societal benefits of treating the mentally ill
Evaluates current public policies from multiple countries
Pursuit of Happiness
Christina Zheng
Econ4692
Main childhood influences on adult life satisfaction (Partial correlation coefficients)
U.S. has highest percentage of treatment of mild and moderate levels of mental illness, second highest for severe levels
Less than 1/3 of people suffering from mental illness receive treatment
(Kahneman and Deaton, 2010)
(Oswald & Wu, 2011)
John F. Helliwell, Richard Layard, and Jeffrey Sachs
Sustainable Development Solutions Network, 2013
Analyzes well-being data from 1.3 million U.S. citizens across 51 states from 2005-2008
Study finds no correlation between well-being and GDP per capita
when data is corrected for people's income, richer states have lower life satisfaction
Analyzes data from 450,000 US residents from 2008-2009 (using Gallup Well-Being Index)
Study finds money can buy happiness, but caps at an annual income of $75,000
Happiness from higher income caps at $75,000
Full transcript