International Journal of Social Science & Economic Research
Submit Paper


Maya K., Neeraj Kumar

|| ||

1Maya K., 2Neeraj Kumar
1. Research Scholar, Department of Econometrics, University of Madras, Chennai - 600005
2. Sr. Research Fellow, Livestock Economics, Statistics & IT Div., ICAR-IVRI, Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh

K., Maya, and Neeraj Kumar. "WHAT DETERMINES LIFE SATISFACTION INEQUALITY? EVIDENCE FROM INDIA." Int. j. of Social Science and Economic Research, vol. 4, no. 8, Aug. 2019, pp. 5420-5443, Accessed Aug. 2019.
K., M., & Kumar, N. (2019, August). WHAT DETERMINES LIFE SATISFACTION INEQUALITY? EVIDENCE FROM INDIA. Int. j. of Social Science and Economic Research, 4(8), 5420-5443. Retrieved from
K., Maya, and Neeraj Kumar. "WHAT DETERMINES LIFE SATISFACTION INEQUALITY? EVIDENCE FROM INDIA." Int. j. of Social Science and Economic Research 4, no. 8 (August 2019), 5420-5443. Accessed August, 2019.


[1]. L. Becchetti, R. Massari and P. Naticchioni, "The drivers of happiness inequality: Suggestions for promoting social cohesion," Oxford Economic Papers, Vol. 66, No. 2, pp. 419-442, 2014.
[2]. K . Beegle, K. Himelein and M. Ravallion, "Frame-of-reference bias in subjective welfare," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Vol. 81, No.2, pp. 556-570, 2012.
[3]. A. E Clark, S. Fle`che and C. Senik, "The Great happiness moderation: Well-being inequality during episodes of income growth", In A. E. Clark & C. Senik (Eds.), Happiness and economic growth: Lessons from developing countries. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2014.
[4]. A. E. Clark, P. Frijters and M. Shields, "Relative income, happiness, and utility: An explanation for the Easterlin paradox and other puzzles," Journal of Economic Literature, Vol. 46, No.1, pp. 96-144, 2008.
[5]. A. E. Clark, S. Fle`che and C. Senik, "Economic growth evens out happiness: Evidence from six surveys," Review of Income and Wealth, Vol. 62, No. 3, pp. 405-419, 2016.
[6]. R. Di Tella and R. MacCulloch, "Some uses of happiness data in economics," Journal of Economic Perspectives, Vol. 20, No. 1, pp. 25-46, 2006.
[7]. E. Diener, R. E. Lucas and S. Oishi, "Subjective well-being: The science of happiness and life satisfaction," In C. R. Snyder and S. J. Lopez (Eds.), Handbook of positive psychology. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002
[8]. E. Diener, E. M. Suh, R. E. Lucas and H. L. Smith, "Subjective well being: Three decades of progress," Psychological Bulletin, Vol. 125, No. 2, pp. 276-302, 1999.
[9]. A. H. Eagly and W. Wood, "Explaining sex differences in social behavior: A meta-analytic perspective," Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Vol. 17, No. 3, pp. 306-315, 1991.
[10]. R. A. Easterlin, "Does economic growth improve the human lot? Some empirical evidence.," In P. A. David and M. W. Reder (Eds.), Nations and households in economic growth: Essays in honor of Moses Abramowitz. New York: Academic Press, 1974.
[11]. A. Ferrer-i-Carbonell and P. Frijters, "How important is methodology for the estimates of the determinants of happiness?," Economic Journal, Vol. 114, No. 497, pp. 641-659, 2004.
[12]. S. Firpo, N. M. Fortin and T. Lemieux, "Decomposing wage distributions using recentered influence function regressions", unpublished manuscript, Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro and University of British Columbia, 2007.
[13]. S. Firpo, N. M. Fortin and T. Lemieux, "Unconditional quantile regressions," Econometrica, Vol. 77, No. 3, pp. 953-973, 2009.
[14]. M. Fleurbaey, "Beyond GDP: The quest for a measure of social welfare," Journal of Economic Literature, Vol. 47, No.4, pp. 1029-1075, 2009.
[15]. B. S. Frey and A. Stutzer, "Happiness, economy and institutions," Economic Journal, Vol. 110, No. 466, pp. 918-938, 2000.
[16]. B. S. Frey and A. Stutzer, "What can economists lean from happiness research?," Journal of Economic Literature, Vol. 40, No. 2, pp. 402-435, 2002.
[17]. J. F. Helliwell, R. Layard and J. Sachs, (Eds.), "World happiness report 2015," New York: Sustainable Development Solutions Network, 2015
[18]. W. Kalmijn and R. Veenhoven, "Measuring inequality of happiness in nations. In search for proper statistics," Journal of Happiness Studies, Vol. 6, No. 4, pp. 357-396, 2005.
[19]. R. Layard, " Happiness: Lessons from a new science," London: Penguin Books, 2005.
[20]. C. Majumdar and G. Gupta, "Don't worry, be happy. A survey of the economics of happiness," Economic and Political Weekly, Vol. 50, No. 40, pp. 50-62, 2015.
[21]. Y. Niimi, "What affects happiness inequality? Evidence from Japan," Journal of Happiness Studies, Vol. 19, No. 2, pp. 521-543, 2018.
[22]. Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), "OECD economic surveys Japan," Paris: OECD, 2015.
[23]. J. Ott, "Level and inequality of happiness in nations: Does greater happiness of a greater number imply greater inequality in happiness?," Journal of Happiness Studies, Vol. 6, No. 4, pp. 397-420, 2005.
[24]. T. Ovaska and R. Takashima, "Does a rising tide life all the boats? Explaining the national inequality of happiness," Journal of Economic Issues, Vol. 44, No. 1, pp. 205-223, 2010.
[25]. B. Stevenson and J. Wolfers, "Happiness inequality in the United States," Journal of Legal Studies, Vol. 37, No. S2, pp. S33-S79, 2008.
[26]. J. E. Stiglitz, A. Sen and J. Fitoussi, "Report by the commission on the measurement of economic performance and social progress," http://www.stiglitz, 2009.
[27]. Y. Tsutsui, F. Ohtake and S. Ikeda, "Naze Anataha Fukounanoka? (in Japanese) (why are you unhappy?)," Osaka Daigaku Keizaigaku (Osaka Economic Papers), Vol. 58, No. 4, pp. 20-57, 2009.
[28]. B. M. S. Van Praag, "Ordinal and cardinal utility: An integration of the two dimensions of the welfare concept," Journal of Econometrics, Vol. 50, No. 1-2, pp. 69-89, 1991.
[29]. B. M. S. Van Praag, "Well-being inequality and reference groups: An agenda for new research," Journal of Economic Inequality, Vol. 9, No. 1, pp. 111-127, 2011.
[30]. R. Veenhoven, "Return of inequality in modern society? Test by dispersion of life-satisfaction across time and nations," Journal of Happiness Studies, Vol. 6, No. 4, pp. 457-487, 2005.

This paper examines the determinants of life satisfaction inequality in India using World Value Survey data. By estimating recentered Influence Function regressions and Decomposition strategy, we find that household income does not have a significant impact on life satisfaction inequality, as observed in other developed countries. However, there is a small impact for income inequality variable on increasing life satisfaction inequality in India. Similarly people perception of their relative standing in terms of their income distribution is also not affecting life satisfaction inequality in India. Moreover, the regression result and decomposition method present that non-pecuniary factors are the major drivers of happiness inequality or life satisfaction inequality like marital status, education, health conditions, employment status etc than that of economic variables like income, relative income etc are concerned. Additionally, under decomposition result, being employed is significantly associated with the widening of life satisfaction inequality. This finding is more consistent with the current labor market issues in India like, share or informal and irregular jobs, which tend to be insecure and low paid and other than that, lack of competitive skills, involuntary unemployment etc.