Alpaslan Akay is an Associate Professor at the University of Gothenburg (Sweden) where he also completed his Ph.D. in March 2008. His main research interests are Experimental and Behavioral Economics, Economics of Happiness, Migration, Microeconometrics and Monte Carlo Simulations.

He joined IZA as a Research Associate in September 2008 and became a Senior Research Associate in September 2011. After moving back to Sweden in September 2013, he remains affiliated with IZA as a Research Fellow. He is currently visiting IZA regularly as a Visiting Research Fellow.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 10908

Multidimensional welfare analysis has recently been revived by money-metric measures based on explicit fairness principles and the respect of individual preferences. To operationalize this approach, preference heterogeneity can be inferred from the observation of individual choices (revealed preferences) or from self-declared satisfaction following these choices (subjective well-being). We question whether...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 10907

Subjective well-being (SWB) data is increasingly used to perform welfare analyses. Interpreted as 'experienced utility', SWB has recently been compared to 'decision utility' using specific experiments, most often based on stated preferences. Results point to an overall congruence between these two types of welfare measures. We question whether these findings...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9726
published in: Journal of Population Economics, 2017, 30(1), 265-306. Article

This paper investigates how ethnic diversity, measured by the immigrants' countries of origin, influences the well-being of the host country. Using panel data from Germany for the period 1998 to 2012, we find a positive effect of ethnic diversity on the well-being of German citizens. To corroborate the robustness of...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 9163
published in: China Economic Review, 2016 (37) 191–207. Pre-publication version available here

The paper investigates the impact of remittances on the relative concerns of households in rural China. Using the Rural to Urban Migration in China (RUMiC) dataset we estimate a series of well-being functions to simultaneously explore the relative concerns with respect to income and remittances. Our results show that although...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 8215
revised version published in: Journal of African Economics, 2014, 23(5), 673-699

Previous research suggests a lower degree of positional concerns among people from poor countries. Yet the evidence is limited and most often builds on the assumption that people’s reference groups are the same across all individuals. We conduct a survey experiment in urban Ethiopia that is modified to include multiplicity...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 7862
published online before print in: Journal of Human Resources, March 2016

This paper examines whether the subjective well-being of migrants is responsive to fluctuations in macroeconomic conditions in their country of origin. Using the German Socio-Economic Panel for the years 1984 to 2009 and macroeconomic variables for 24 countries of origin, we exploit country-year variation for identification of the effect and...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6999

This paper offers a first empirical investigation of how labor taxation (income and payroll taxes) affects individuals' well-being. For identification, we exploit exogenous variation in tax rules over time and across demographic groups using 26 years of German panel data. We find that the tax effect on subjective well-being is...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6732
published in: Ecological Economics, 2013, 88, 1-10

Concerns for environmental quality and its impact on people's welfare are fundamental arguments for the adoption of environmental legislation in most countries. In this paper, we analyse the relationship between air quality and subjective well-being in Europe. We use a unique dataset that merges three waves of the European Social...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6631
revised version published in: Review of Economics of the Household, 2014, 12(3), 517-546 [Online Access]

The main objective of this paper is to propose a systematic approach to empirically analyse the effect of remittances on the utility of migrants, as proxied by their subjective well-being (SWB). Using data from a new survey on China (RUMiC), we estimate models in which a measure of subjective well-...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6630
Alpaslan Akay, Amelie F. Constant, Corrado Giulietti
published in: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2014, 103, 72–92. Pre-publication version available here

This paper examines the effect of immigration directly on the overall utility of natives. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first paper to explore such nexus. Combining information from the German Socio-Economic Panel dataset with detailed local labour market characteristics for the period 1997 to 2007, we...