This book explores a number of questions concerning happiness, such as what it is that makes people happy and whether happiness can be proved with credible methods and data; the determinants of happiness across cohorts, countries, and cultures; whether happiness levels are innate to individuals or whether they are influenced by policy and the environment people live in; or how happiness is affected by poverty or progress. Using analytical and research tools that are provided by new approaches in economics and from extensive work on the topic by psychologists, the book examines the relationship between happiness and income, between happiness and health, and between happiness and the probabilities of being married, employed, and of quitting or starting smoking. It also considers the potential of happiness surveys to contribute to better public policy.
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