Ülo Ennuste Economics

papers and articles in wordpress

A suggestion


Summary of this Report

When thinking about increasing happiness, one of the most important aspects is measurement. Is there

a way to accurately measure people’s happiness, both within and across societies? Chapter 2 discusses the

happiness measures currently in use across countries, specifically the Gallup World Poll (GWP), the World

Values Survey (WVS), and the European Social Survey (ESS), and asks whether or not these measures can

provide valid information about quality of life that can be used to guide policy-making. It considers the

questions of the reliability and validity of well-being measures; how happiness can be compared; whether

or not there is a happiness set point; and if happiness is “serious” enough to be taken seriously. The chapter

argues that regular large-scale collection of happiness data will enable analysis of the impacts of policies on

well-being. It concludes that regular large-scale collection of happiness data will improve macroeconomic

policy-making, and can inform service delivery.

In order to both measure and improve happiness levels, we must understand what influences these levels.

Chapter 3 discusses the causes of happiness and misery, based on 30 years of research on the topic. Both

external and personal features determine well-being. Some of the important external factors include income,

work, community and governance, and values and religion. More “personal” factors include mental and

physical health, family experience, education, gender, and age. Many of these factors have a two-way interaction

with happiness – physical health may improve happiness, while happiness improves physical health. An

analysis of all these factors strikingly shows that while absolute income is important in poor countries, in

richer countries comparative income is probably the most important. Many other variables have a more powerful

effect on happiness, including social trust, quality of work, and freedom of choice and political participation.

Chapter 4 discusses some of the policy implications of these findings. GNP is a valuable goal, but should

not be pursued to the point where economic stability is jeopardized, community cohesion is destroyed, the

vulnerable are not supported, ethical standards are sacrificed, or the world’s climate is put at risk. While

basic living standards are essential for happiness, after the baseline has been met happiness varies more

with quality of human relationships than income. Other policy goals should include high employment and

high-quality work; a strong community with high levels of trust and respect, which government can influence

through inclusive participatory policies; improved physical and mental health; support of family life; and a

decent education for all. Four steps to improve policy-making are the measurement of happiness, explanation

of happiness, putting happiness at the center of analysis, and translation of well-being research into design

and delivery of services.


Osundamisi The Economist 6. aprill 2012 artiklist:

 „Õnn – Enam ei sünge teadus?“, autor J.-P. (Google tõlk)

„ … mida tähendab õnn ja soovitusi valitsustele, kuidas kõige paremini seda suurendada. Kõnealune on saanud hiljuti saavutatud World Happiness aruanne (*). Tellitud ÜRO Happiness egiidi all ÜRO peaassamblee, et see kannab Trükiluba of Columbia ülikooli Maa Instituut ning toimetanud instituudi direktor Jeffrey Sachs ja 2 õnne eksperdid, Richard Layard of London School of Majandus ja John Helliwell of University of British Columbia. …
… “subjektiivne heaolu. Rühma rahastab USA valitsus, ja kui tema meetmeid peetakse usaldusväärseks nad võiksid saada ametlikuks statistikaks. Kui jah, siis Ameerikas oleks muutunud viimaste riigina ronima pardale õnne bandwagon. Prantsuse valitsus alustas avaldada oma õnne näitaja 2009. Briti Office for National Statistics on programm mõõtmise riigi heaolu ning Majandusliku Koostöö ja Arengu on koostada suunised, et selle liikmed (peamiselt arenenud rikastes riikides) saab toota “heaolu andmed”.
… Nad väidavad, et õnne saab mõõta objektiivselt; et see erineb süstemaatiliselt kogu ühiskonda ja pikema aja jooksul; et õnn on prognoositav põhjuste ja on korrelatsioonis konkreetseid asju (näiteks vara, tulu jaotamine, tervise-ja poliitilised institutsioonid) ning et seetõttu peaks see olema võimalik, et valitsus luua õiged tingimused õnne edenema.  … “

(*) aruanne on täies mahus (ca 150 lk) priilt saadaval:


April 8, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized

1 Comment »

  1. Linking institutions to economic performance: the role of macro-structures in micro-explanationsArticle author queryhédoin c [Google Scholar]
    CYRIL HÉDOIN – JOIE (in Press)

    Comment by Ülo Ennuste | April 14, 2012 | Reply

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