No. 1221 - Big-city life (dis)satisfaction? The effect of urban living on subjective well-being

We analyze the relationship between individuals' well-being and the size of the urban area in which they live in Italy. Identifying the factors influencing big-city dwellers' subjective well-being may make it easier to adopt measures aimed at increasing the attractiveness of big cities and, in turn, the contribution of agglomeration economies to aggregate growth.

Big-city life negatively affects subjective well-being. This negative premium with respect to city size is heterogeneous between and within urban areas. The main factors limiting population mobility and the underlying agglomeration processes are congestion and commute time.

Published in 2021 in: Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, vol. 192, pp. 740-764