Social context, social inequalities, and subjective well-being

Head of Research:  Gábor Hajdu

This research proposal summarizes four research projects that aim to advance our knowledge on the social aspects of subjective well-being. Specifically, the research projects focus on the social context of subjective well-being and on the relationship between social inequalities and subjective well-being.

In Project 1, we will test the “social norm of unemployment” hypothesis, i.e. we will analyze how the effect of unemployment on subjective well-being is associated with the unemployment rate.

In Project 2, we will analyze the relationship between subjective (perceived) and objective income inequalities and subjective well-being. We plan to answer our research questions on two levels: (1) in a cross-country analysis comparing developed countries (participating in the ISSP), (2) in a within-country analysis utilize the large dataset of the Hungarian micro-census of 2016.

In Project 3, the main research question is whether the results of previous social psychological experiments about a happiness gap between experiential and material purchases can be explained by the stigmatizing effect of materialism and by social desirability bias.

In Project 4, we aim to bring together the literature on childhood circumstances and the literature on subjective well-being, and we aim to extend these literatures by analyzing the effect of health at birth on subjective well-being in later life.