Golovtseva, Victoria (2008). Are we happy with our life comparing to others: testing relative income and life satisfaction relationship in Ukraine. Master's thesis / Doctoral dissertation.
The aim of the original research work is to investigate the relationship between relative income and life satisfaction in the case of Ukraine, using the data from Ukrainian Longitudinal Monitoring Survey in 2003-2004. The empirical research is conducted within relative deprivation theory framework, according to which a person compares his income to other group members and feels relatively deprived and therefore less happy when his income is below others. For the purpose of empirical analysis several reference measures for relative income calculation are proposed: based on geographical approach and personal characteristics of individuals – "people like me". According to the results of the study people not only care about their absolute level of income, but also compare their income to the income of other people living in the same geographical area. Besides it is verified that males compare their incomes within the particular place of their inhabitance, whereas women also care about income of other women in their age group.