Is money making happiness? For centuries, researchers have been trying to answer this question. A new study shows that having large incomes does not guarantee happiness in everyday life.
The search for happiness . An ultimate quest, which for thousands of years has been nourished by quotes, proverbs, and other thoughts left here and there by personalities witnessing an era and a culture. Let us take, at random, this one, which is one of the best known: “Money does not make happiness.” Who is at the origin of this proverb? Maybe Pierre Choderlos de Laclos (1741-1803), military officer and writer in Dangerous Liaisons . The Marquise de Merteuil is the author of the following sentence: “I confess that money does not make happiness; But it must also be admitted that it makes it much easier. “The proverb is often followed by” but it contributes strongly. ”
A proverb for the less practical: on the one hand, the poorest can find a consolation of not having enough money, and on the other hand the rich can find an excuse to have many. Two interpretations. Georges Feydeau , the playwright, takes the proverb by adding a touch of cynicism “Money doesn’t buy happiness. It is even a question of why the rich hold so much. ”
Does money make happiness then? Numerous studies have examined the subject. Some results go in one direction, and others go in the opposite direction. A new study by the LSE (London School of Economics), called “The Origins of Happiness,” is interested in new about. His main education: having large incomes does not guarantee to be happier on a daily basis.
Well-being should be a central concern
Who is the author of the study? Lord Richard Layard , former advisor to Tony Blair and founder in 1990 of the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics. The economist has made the economy of happiness his favorite subject. He published a book entitled “The Price of Happiness.” Lord Richard Layard demonstrates that for the state, focusing primarily on social and psychological factors can be more beneficial than on economic policies. He also observed that in 50 years, the overall improvement in incomes did not generate a general “well-being”. Lord Layard says that social policies aimed to eliminate depression or anxiety may reduce the discomfort by 20% while policies aimed at reducing poverty would come to reduce this discomfort at height Of 5%.
Is the well-being of citizens the value of tomorrow? The work of this study, supported by the British newspaper The Guardian , were conducted with data from four countries, including Germany and the United States . The economists who participated in this study are all the same thing: the welfare of the population should be at the center of policies. “This research shows that states must set aside the creation of wealth to focus on the creation of well-being,” says Layard. In other words, the economic lever should leave room for the benefit of psycho-social leverage to serve the well-being of the individual in his daily life. “Having a partner is also good for you being made redundant is bad,” even the researchers said in the Guardian .