Capabilities and Happiness

Hardcover | October 30, 2008

EditorLuigino Bruni, Flavio Comim, Maurizio Pugno

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Few would dispute that the well-being of individuals is one of the most desirable aims of human actions. However, approaches on how to define, measure, evaluate, and promote well-being differ widely. The conventional economic approach takes income (or the power to acquire market goods) as themost important indicator for well-being, and the utility function as the formal device for positive and normative analysis. However, this approach to well-being has been questioned for being seriously limited and other approaches have arisen.The capability approach to well-being, which has been developed during the last two decades by Amartya Sen and Martha Nussbaum, and the Happiness Approach to well-being, championed by Richard Easterlin, both provide an alternative. Both approaches come from different traditions and have developedindependently, but nevertheless aim to overcome the rigid boundaries of the conventional economic approach to well-being. Given these common aims, it is surprising that little comparative work has been undertaken across these approaches. This book aims to correct this by providing the reader withcontributions from leading names associated with both approaches, as well as contributions which evaluate the approaches and contrast one with the other.

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Few would dispute that the well-being of individuals is one of the most desirable aims of human actions. However, approaches on how to define, measure, evaluate, and promote well-being differ widely. The conventional economic approach takes income (or the power to acquire market goods) as themost important indicator for well-being, and...

Luigino Bruni is Associate Professor of Political Economy at Milano-Bicocca. Flavio Comim is a Fellow of St Edmund's College, Cambridge. Maurizio Pugno is Professor of Economics at the University of Cassino.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:416 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 1 inPublished:October 30, 2008Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199532141

ISBN - 13:9780199532148

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Table of Contents

Luigino Bruni, Flavio Comim, and Maurizio Pugno: Introduction1. Amartya Sen: The Economics of Happiness and Capability2. Richard Easterlin: Life Cycle Happiness and Its Sources: Why Psychology and Economics Need Each Other3. Ed Diener and Pelin Kesebir: In Defence of Happiness: Why Policymakers Should Care About Subjective Well-Being4. Carol Graham: Some Insights on Development from the Economics of Happiness5. Luigino Bruni: Back to Aristotle? Happiness, Eudaimonia and Relational Goods6. Flavio Comim: Capabilities and Happiness: Potential Synergies7. Johannes Hirata: The Division of Labour Between The Capability And The Happiness Perspective8. Edward L. Deci, Richard M. Ryan, and Maarten Vansteenkiste: Self-Determination Theory and the Explanatory Role of Psychological Needs In Human Well-Being9. Carol D. Ryff and Burton H. Singer: Know Thyself and Become What You Are: A Eudaimonic Approach To Psychological Well-Being10. Maurizio Pugno: Capabilities, the Self, and Well-Being11. Sabina Alkire: Subjective Quantitative Indicators of Human Agency12. Erik Angner: The Philosophical Foundations of Subjective Measures Of Well-Being13. Robert Sugden: Capability, Happiness And Opportunity