Migration does not bring happiness

Last Updated: Sep 01, 2010, 13:03 PM IST

Washington: A new study by a sociologist has suggested that economic migrants seeking a `better life` might end up being less happy.

The grass might not be greener on the other side of the border, the study from the University of Leicester has found.

Economic migrants traveling to different shores for greater income could be set for disappointment – because the pursuit of wealth does not equate with happiness, suggests the research.

Sociologist Dr David Bartram sought to establish whether those people who were motivated by higher incomes in a wealthy country actually gain greater happiness via migration.

He also examined whether these economic migrants might have exaggerated expectations about what they will achieve and experience, such that there is some significant disappointment.

Dr Bartram, of the Department of Sociology, said: "The study of happiness tells us that people generally do not gain greater happiness from earning higher incomes – which suggests that migrants might be mistaken in believing that they will be better off if they can move to a wealthy country.”

The research examined responses from 1400 people in the World Values Survey (existing survey data).

Sociologist Dr David Bartram carried out the study: "Economic Migration and Happiness: Comparing Immigrants` and Natives` Happiness Gains from Income."

It has been published by Social Indicators Research online on 27th August and will be printed next year.

ANI