On the Relationship of Income and Life Satisfaction: a Comparison of Absolute and Relative Theory

소득과 전반적 삶의 만족 간의 관계:욕구이론과 비교이론의 대비

  • 이현송 (호서대학교 사회복지학)
  • Received : 2001.01.08
  • Accepted : 2001.02.22
  • Published : 2001.03.31


In this study I attempted to compare the two contrasting theories on life satisfaction; alsolute or relative. I could confirm a positive curve-linear relationship of income and life satisfaction among Koreans as in many previous studies. A relative hypothesis saying that one's relative superiority on education could bring about more satisfaction was partly supported in this study. On the other hand, another relative hypothesis saying that income increase could make more satisfaction than income decrease over time on a identical level of income was rejected. This result suggests that income increase can not give more satisfaction in addition to more affluence simply because of the fact that one's current income is higher than his or her previous level of income.