It is widely accepted that individual happiness is not, or not solely, related to material possessions, at least once basic needs are fulfilled. It has been demonstrated that interpersonal relationships and social capital matter too, and people whose values are more centred on material possessions have a greater probability of being less happy. Is this still true during the COVID-19 pandemic, when interpersonal relations, health and economic security are threatened and feelings of insecurity emerge? This is the issue that we address in this paper. We exploited the unique natural situation of the pandemic and lockdown in Italy to investigate the relationship between happiness and relational and material goods. Data collected by questionnaire during the lockdown suggests that the main direct effect of the pandemic on the happiness of respondents was related to the effect of the pandemic and lockdown on interpersonal relationships. Those who declared that COVID and lockdown had jeopardized their interpersonal relationships were significantly less likely to report higher levels of happiness, especially when controlling for other personal and contextual covariates. An important gender, religious and town size effect also emerged. Moreover, relational goods and good health were considered to be the most important determinants of happiness, though people were not so worried about their own health.

Bimonte, S., Bosco, L., Stabile, A. (2022). In Virus Veritas Lockdown and Happiness Under COVID-19. SOCIAL INDICATORS RESEARCH, 164, 823-842 [10.1007/s11205-022-02974-x].

In Virus Veritas Lockdown and Happiness Under COVID-19

Salvatore Bimonte;Luigi Bosco;Arsenio Stabile
2022

Abstract

It is widely accepted that individual happiness is not, or not solely, related to material possessions, at least once basic needs are fulfilled. It has been demonstrated that interpersonal relationships and social capital matter too, and people whose values are more centred on material possessions have a greater probability of being less happy. Is this still true during the COVID-19 pandemic, when interpersonal relations, health and economic security are threatened and feelings of insecurity emerge? This is the issue that we address in this paper. We exploited the unique natural situation of the pandemic and lockdown in Italy to investigate the relationship between happiness and relational and material goods. Data collected by questionnaire during the lockdown suggests that the main direct effect of the pandemic on the happiness of respondents was related to the effect of the pandemic and lockdown on interpersonal relationships. Those who declared that COVID and lockdown had jeopardized their interpersonal relationships were significantly less likely to report higher levels of happiness, especially when controlling for other personal and contextual covariates. An important gender, religious and town size effect also emerged. Moreover, relational goods and good health were considered to be the most important determinants of happiness, though people were not so worried about their own health.
Bimonte, S., Bosco, L., Stabile, A. (2022). In Virus Veritas Lockdown and Happiness Under COVID-19. SOCIAL INDICATORS RESEARCH, 164, 823-842 [10.1007/s11205-022-02974-x].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11365/1214255