Generally, the aim of this dissertation is to go beyond the examination of objective factors for measuring progress by complementing them with subjective factors to evaluate under which circumstances economic development is a prerequisite for well-being and whether there are other conditions that can satisfy well-being during hardships.
More specifically, the thesis has three objectives:
The first objective is to explore the relative performance of an income-based indicator of prosperity compared to a SWB indicator of prosperity and to identify what possibly drives their differences.
The aim of this exercise is to improve our knowledge on the objective and subjective dimensions that can be relevant in explaining progress.
The second is to explore why positive economic growth might not be accompanied by respective improvements in SWB.
A recent case, the social uprising in Arab Spring countries, occurred in a region where, according to many indicators, economic and human development was improving; however, dissatisfaction among citizens was prevalent. I explore several objective conditions and subjective dimensions of dissatisfaction as drivers of general unhappiness. I aim to highlight the value of subjective evaluations of life domains and life in general as tools that can help us evaluate progress in societies.
The third objective is to identify factors that mitigate the effect of crises on SWB.
To address the lack of a framework to identify crisis moderators, this dissertation adopts a useful approach originating from the management discipline that is known as the contingency approach or the situational approach (Fiedler, 1964).

H.R. Commandeur (Harry) , F.G. van Oort (Frank) , M.J. Burger (Martijn)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
ERIM Ph.D. Series Research in Management
Department of Applied Economics

Arampatzi, E. (2018, November). Subjective Well-Being in Times of Crisis : Evidence on the wider impact of economic crises and turmoil on subjective well-being. (No. EPS-2018-459-S&E). ERIM Ph.D. Series Research in Management. Retrieved from