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CEP discussion paper

Happy Talk: mode of administration effects on subjective well-being


Research on the measurement of subjective well-being (SWB) has escalated in recent years. This study contributes to the literature by examining how SWB reports differ by mode of survey administration. Using data from the 2011 Annual Population Survey in the UK, we find that individuals consistently report higher SWB over the phone compared to face-to-face interviews. We also show that the determinants of SWB differ significantly by survey mode. We must therefore account for mode of administration effects in research into SWB and its determinants.


Paul Dolan and Georgios Kavetsos

31 July 2012     Paper Number CEPDP1159

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This CEP discussion paper is published under the centre's Community Wellbeing programme.

This publication comes under the following theme: Wellbeing Policy