In his critique of Bruno Frey's book Happiness: A Revolution in Economics, psychologist Robert Biswas-Diener notes that "Perhaps the most frequently asked question related to happiness is 'Does money buy happiness?'" He then notes that "By and large, the simple answer to the question of money and happiness is that, yes, income does seem associated in a relatively small but significant way with happiness."
He goes on to note that "Frey's discussion will be welcome to those who have long believed in the legitimacy of happiness research and will foment debate among those who don't. In either case, Frey is correct: Happiness is a topic that will bring together psychologists, sociologists, and economists."
Is the relationship between money and happiness always (modestly) positive? Is this a legitimate area for psychological research? What studies in this emerging research area are the most convincing?
By Robert Biswas-Diener
PsycCRITIQUES, 2008 Vol 53(47)