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Decentralization, Happiness And The Perception Of Institutions

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Executive Summary

This paper analyses whether the different powers and resources at the disposal of local and regional governments across Europe deliver greater satisfaction with political institutions and lead to greater personal happiness. The analysis uses microdata from the four available waves of the European social survey (2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008), including more than 160,000 observations of individuals living in 29 European countries. The authors' results reveal that political and fiscal decentralization has a positive and significant effect on individuals' overall happiness.

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