Occupational status and life satisfaction in the UK : The miserable middle ? Article - Décembre 2022

Yannis Georgellis, Andrew E. Clark, Emmanuel Apergis, Catherine Robinson

Yannis Georgellis, Andrew E. Clark, Emmanuel Apergis, Catherine Robinson, « Occupational status and life satisfaction in the UK : The miserable middle ?  », Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, décembre 2022, pp. 509-527. ISSN 0167-2681

Abstract

We use British panel data to explore the link between occupational status and life satisfaction. We find puzzling evidence for men of a U-shaped relationship in cross-section data : employees in medium-status occupations report lower life satisfaction scores than those of employees in either low- or high-status occupations. This puzzle disappears in panel data : the satisfaction of any man rises as he moves up the status ladder. The culprit seems to be immobility : the miserable middle is caused by men who have always been in medium-status occupations. There is overall little evidence of a link between occupational status and life satisfaction for women, although this relationship for higher-educated women does look more like that for men.

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