Running head: MONEY AND HAPPINESS
Does An Increase In Wealth Make People, And Countries, Happier? Bishop's University
March 11, 2014
PSY 246B: Social Psychology II
In this paper, the relationship between happiness and money was examined. Does money buy happiness? Three studies were examined in depth to provide an answer to this question. This paper found that people believed that they would be happier if they were richer. It was also found that people gaining less than $ 75,000 per year experienced lower life happiness. Studies showed that an increase in income is only good for increasing the individual’s happiness for a short period of time. Keyword: Upper-class, middle-class, lower-class, happiness, money. Does An Increase In Wealth Make People, And Countries, Happier? People often believe that money will bring happiness in their lives. Being in the position of a poor person or a rich person might account for different points of view. Does money really bring your well-being? Do people seem happier in rich countries? These are some of the questions that will be looked upon in this essay. “People who claim that money can’t buy happiness just don’t know where to shop” (Diener & Diener, 2002). In this essay, it will be shown how people perceive their own happiness and other’s happiness in relation to the income they earn per year. To introduce the concept of money and happiness, one should examine first of all what is the perception of people about money. Do people believe that they will be happier earning a bigger income? These are questions that can be answered through an experiment conducted by Aknin et al (2009). In their studies, they examined what are the intuitions of people if they earned a bigger income. The first study tested 429 individuals from the United States from an online survey. The participants mean age was 40.2 and these participants had to answer a second online...
References: Aknin, L. B., Norton, M., & Dunn, E. W. (2009). From wealth to well-being? Money matters,
but less than people think
Aknin, L., Dunn, E., & Norton, M. (2012). Happiness runs in a circular motion: evidence for
a positive feedback loop between prosocial spending and happiness
Diener, E., & Biswas-Diener, R. (2002). Will money increase subjective well-being? A
literature review and guide to needed research
Luscombe, B. (2010, September 27). The cost of happiness. Time, 176-56.
McBride, M, (2010). Money, happiness, and aspirations: An experimental study. Journal of
Economic behavior & Organization, 74, 262-276.
Quoidbach, J., Dunn, E. W., Petrides, K. V., & Mikolajczak, M. (2010). Money giveth,
money taketh away: The dual effect of wealth on happiness
Figure 2. Actual and predicted happiness levels for both oneself and another at the 10 household income point estimates in Study 2 obtained by Aknin et al (2009).
Figure 3. Economic growth and SWB in Japan obtained by Diener and Biswas-Diener
Figure 4. The importance of love and money, and SWB obtained by Diener and Biswas-Diener (2002).
Figure 5. Income, materialism, and life satisfaction obtained by Diener and Biswas-Diener (2002).
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