High benefits don’t make jobless happier says study

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BENEFIT levels have no effect on the well-being of jobless people, according to experts in the Capital.

Researchers from Edinburgh University said high unemployment benefits would not lead to people becoming lazy and satisfied with their status.

And levels of benefit have no effect on the well-being of those without a job, according to the study, which compared how unemployment affected people’s life satisfaction in 28 countries.

The experts, who have produced a report based on the analysis, found being jobless in a country with a proportionally older population and fewer people of working age had a greater negative impact than benefit levels. Report author Dr Jan Eichhorn, of Edinburgh University’s school of social and political science, said unemployment was perceived differently in different societies.

“Those who claim that greater unemployment benefits lead to less motivation for people to seek employment should think again – for most people, it is not the degree of state provisions that determines how they personally feel about the experience of being unemployed,” he said.

“Unemployment does not just result in a loss of income, but also a change in social position – that is perceived differently in different societies.”