The Surprising Economics of Our Most Valuable Asset
Author: Nick Powdthavee
Pubpsher: 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.
Economics is unavoidably central to any attempt to improve our quality of life, but most people do not know why, or how to question its underlying assumptions. The Skeptical Economist rejects the story told by other popular economics books. Responding to Western malaise about quality of life, and a growing curiosity about economics and its relevance to these concerns, Jonathan Aldred argues 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, what we value and why. This revealing and entertaining book exposes these hidden assumptions, and opens up the black box of modern economics to reveal that conventional wisdom is not what it appears to be. The Skeptical Economist will challenge us all to examine the assumptions behind the economics of our current way of life. It rediscovers the ethics at the heart of economics.
Release on 2010-01-22 | by Susan J. Smith,Beverley A. Searle
The Housing Wealth of Nations
Author: Susan J. Smith,Beverley A. Searle
Pubpsher: John Wiley & Sons
Category: Business & Economics
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
Release on 2012-04-24 | by Bernd Schmitt,Glenn Van Zutphen
How Your Business Can Profit from the Insights of Positive Psychology
Author: Bernd Schmitt,Glenn Van Zutphen
Pubpsher: 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 paradox of happy peasants and miserable millionaires
Author: Carol Graham
Pubpsher: 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
Pubpsher: 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.
The Semiotics of Happiness examines the rise of 'happiness' (and its various satellite terminologies) as a social and political semiotic, exploring its origins in the US and subsequent spread into the UK and across the globe. The research takes as its starting point the development of discussions about happiness in UK newspapers in which dedicated advocates began to claim that a new 'science of happiness' had been discovered and argued for social and political change on its behalf. Through an in-depth analysis of the written and visual rhetoric and subsequent activities of these influential 'claims-makers', Frawley argues that happiness became a serious political issue not because of a growing unhappiness in society nor a demand 'on the ground' for new knowledge about it, but rather because influential and dedicated 'insiders' took the issue on at a cultural moment when problems cast in emotional terms were particularly likely to make an impact. Emerging from the analysis is the observation that, while apparently positive and light-hearted, the concern with happiness implicitly affirms a 'vulnerability' model of human functioning, encourages a morality of low expectations, and in spite of the radical language used to describe it, is ultimately conservative and ideally suited to an era of 'no alternative' (to capitalism).
The Making of a Post-Keynesian Economist: Cambridge Harvest gathers up the threads of the last decade of the author's twenty eight years in Cambridge, before his return to Australia. The essays include autobiography, theory, review articles, surveys, policy, intellectual biographies and tributes, and general essays.