The Surprising Economics of Our Most Valuable Asset
Author: Nick Powdthavee
Publisher: Icon Books Ltd
Category: Social Science
Why is marriage worth £200,000 a year? Why will having children make you unhappy? Why does happiness from winning the lottery take two years to arrive? Why does time heal the pain of divorce or the death of a loved one – but not unemployment? Everybody wants to be happy. But how much happiness – precisely – will each life choice bring? Should I get married? Am I really going to feel happy about the career that I picked? How can we decide not only which choice is better for us, but how much it’s better for us? The result of new, unique research, The Happiness Equation brings to a general readership for the first time the new science of happiness economics. It describes how we can measure emotional reactions to different life experiences and present them in ways we can relate to. How, for instance, monetary values can be put on things that can’t be bought or sold in the market – such as marriage, friendship, even death – so that we can objectively rank them in order of preference. It also explains why some things matter more to our happiness than others (like why seeing friends is worth more than a Ferrari) while others are worth almost nothing (like sunny weather). Nick Powdthavee – whose work on happiness has been discussed on both the Undercover Economist and Freakanomics blogs – brings cutting-edge research on how we value our happiness to a general audience, with a style that wears its learning lightly and is a joy to read.
This book will change your life by showing you how life changes. Why does happiness get harder in your 40s? Why do you feel in a slump even when you're successful? Where does this malaise come from? And, most importantly, will it ever end? Drawing on cutting-edge research, award-winning journalist Jonathan Rauch answers all these questions. He shows that from our 20s into our 40s, happiness follows a well-documented U-shaped trajectory, a "happiness curve", declining from the optimism of youth into what's often a long, low trough in middle age, before starting to rise again in our 50s. This isn't a midlife crisis, though. Rauch reveals that this downturn is instead a natural stage of life – and an essential one. By shifting priorities away from competition and toward compassion, you can equip yourself with new tools of wisdom and gratitude to head positively into your later years. And Rauch can testify to this personally – it was his own slump, despite acclaim as a journalist and commentator that compelled him to investigate the happiness curve. His own story and the stories of many others from all walks of life – from a steelworker and a limo driver to a telecoms executive and a philanthropist – show how the ordeal of midlife malaise can reboot our values and even our brains for a rebirth of gratitude. Full of insights and eye-opening data, and featuring practical ways to endure the dip and avoid its perils and traps, The Happiness Curve doesn't just show you the dark forest of midlife, it helps you find a path through the trees.
The Skeptical Economist rejects the story told by other popular economics books. It shows that economics is not an agreed body of knowledge or an objective science. In reality, economics is built on ethical foundations, distinctive and controversial views about how we ought to live, and what we value.
The Blackwell Companion to the Economics of Housing willhelp students and professionals alike to explore key elements ofthe housing economy: home prices, housing wealth, mortgage debt,and financial risk. Features 24 original essays, including an editorialintroduction and three section overviews Includes 39 world-class authors from a mix of educational andfinancial organizations in the UK, Europe, Australia, and NorthAmerica Broadly-based, scholarly, and accessible, serving students andprofessionals who wish to understand how today’s housingeconomy works Profiles the role and relevance of housing wealth; themismanagement of mortgage debt; and the pitfalls and potential ofhedging housing risk Key topics include: the housing price bubble and crash; thesubprime mortgage crisis in the US and its aftermath; the linksbetween housing wealth, the macroeconomy, and the welfare ofhome-occupiers; the mitigation of credit and housing investmentrisks Specific case studies help to illustrate concepts, along withnew data sets and analyses to illustrate empirical points
The paradox of happy peasants and miserable millionaires
Author: Carol Graham
Publisher: OUP Oxford
Category: Political Science
For centuries the pursuit of happiness was the preserve of either the philosopher or the voluptuary and took second place to the basic need to survive on the one hand, and the pressure to conform to social conventions and morality on the other. More recently there is a burgeoning interest in the study of happiness, in the social sciences and in the media. Can we really answer the question what makes people happy? Is it really grounded in credible methods and data? Is there consistency in the determinants of happiness across countries and cultures? Are happiness levels innate to individuals or can policy and the environment make a difference? How is happiness affected by poverty? By economic progress? Is happiness a viable objective for policy? This book is an attempt to answer these questions, based on research on the determinants of happiness in countries around the world, ranging from Peru and Russia to the U.S. and Afghanistan. The book reviews the theory and concepts of happiness, explaining how these concepts underpin a line of research which is both an attempt to understand the determinants of happiness and a tool for understanding the effects of a host of phenomena on human well being. The research finds surprising consistency in the determinants of happiness across levels of development. Yet there is still much debate over the relationship between happiness and income. The book explores the effects of many mediating factors in that relationship, ranging from macroeconomic trends and democracy to inequality and crime. It also reviews what we know about happiness and health and how that relationship varies according to income levels and health status. It concludes by discussing the potential - and the potential pitfalls - of using happiness surveys to contribute to better public policy.
Towards a Political Economy of the Built Environment
Author: Franklin Obeng-Odoom
Publisher: Zed Books Ltd.
Category: Business & Economics
Neoclassical economics, the intellectual bedrock of modern capitalism, faces growing criticisms, as many of its key assumptions and policy prescriptions are systematically challenged. Yet, there remains one field of economics where these limitations continue virtually unchallenged: the study of cities and regions in built-environment economics. In this book, Franklin Obeng-Odoom draws on institutional, Georgist and Marxist economics to clearly but comprehensively show what the key issues are today in thinking about urban economics. In doing so, he demonstrates the widespread tensions and contradictions in the status quo, showing how to reconstruct urban economics in order to create a more just society and environment.
How Your Business Can Profit from the Insights of Positive Psychology
Author: Bernd Schmitt
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Category: Business & Economics
Every business knows that the best customer is a happy customer. They return again and again, bring their friends and family, and deliver tons of free advertising via word of mouth and social media. But in order to grow that loyal base, you must be keenly aware of your customers' needs and preferences. Drawing on the latest research in the exploding field of positive psychology, Columbia Business School professor Bernd Schmitt offers three unique approaches any business can use to turning a casual customer into a committed fan: • The Feel-Good Method: Use the experience of pleasure and positive emotion to hook new customers, and watch those feel-good moments transform an impulsive buyer into a committed loyalist. • The Values-and-Meaning Method: Attract passionate customers by appealing to their core values, like being socially responsible, protecting the environment, or living a simple life • The Engagement Method: Get customers to notice a unique or limited offer, immerse them in the experience, and have them share it with friends and family. Schmitt shows marketers, brand managers, and entrepreneurs how to design an authentic and successful campaign that will reach, grow, and sustain a devoted base of customers.
The Happy Student is written by a student for students. Daniel Wong doesnt have a PhD in education or psychology, but his transformation from unhappy overachiever to happy straight-A student has given him unique insight into what motivates students intrinsically. By sharing with readers his personal story and the five-step program he has developed, unmotivated students everywhere will understand how they, too, can find deep satisfaction in the pursuit of academic success.,