Title: Wellbeing, economic development and economic growth: a literature synthesis and proposed theory

Authors: Michael Pennock

Addresses: Ministry of Health, 1515 Blanshard St., Victoria, British Columbia, V8W 3C8, Canada

Abstract: The relationship between economic growth and population wellbeing has emerged as an important public policy issue as a result of the growing consensus among economic forecasters that advanced economies are likely to experience a prolonged period of slower economic growth than in the past, primarily due to demographic changes. During the past two decades, there has been an expanding body of research literature on this topic which has been marked by inconsistent results and a lively debate between investigators. This paper attempts to address this issue through a synthesis of this literature and the formulation of a theoretical framework which can be used to guide public policy deliberations pertaining to the protection of population wellbeing in an era of slower economic growth. It utilises the research literature to identify the key contributors to wellbeing in nations and concludes that an increased focus on important non-economic contributors will be required to counter the effects of lower rates of income growth in advanced nations.

Keywords: wellbeing; happiness; economic growth; economic development; literature synthesis; public policy; demographic changes.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHD.2016.076196

International Journal of Happiness and Development, 2016 Vol.3 No.1, pp.44 - 63

Received: 16 Jul 2015
Accepted: 14 Oct 2015

Published online: 29 Apr 2016 *

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