Benjamin Radcliff

Benjamin Radcliff

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Professor of American Politics

Office: 426 Decio Hall
Phone: 574-631-3768

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Areas of Expertise

Science of happiness, happiness economics

Benjamin Radcliff works at the intersection of American and comparative politics. His current research focuses on the social scientific study of happiness within the multidisciplinary field sometimes labeled happiness economics. His most recent book is “The Political Economy of Human Happiness” (Cambridge University Press), which has received wide attention within both the academy and the popular press. Radcliff has also produced a series of empirical articles focusing on political participation, elections and public policy outcomes in the industrial democracies and across the American States, with a special focus on the role of organized labor.


People in states that rely heavily on ballot initiatives are happier
Two Notre Dame Arts and Letters professors win Fulbright awards
ND study: Unions make both members and nonmembers happier
Notre Dame ReSource: Liberal policies equal happier citizens, says political scientist
Don’t worry: Happiness conference attracts international scholars


U.S. News & World Report — Direct Democracy May Be Key to a Happier American Democracy
‘AP — Happiness advantage’ over age 30 is vanishing, study finds
Newsweek — What Makes Us Happier? Government or the Free Market?
Mashable — Small government is bad for your pursuit of happiness
The American Prospect — Why Joining a Union is Good For Your Well-Being
USA Today — Super-size McDonald’s raise benefits us all: Column
Talking Points Memo — What Are We Really Buying With A Minimum Wage Hike?
The Washington Post — Does a higher minimum wage make people happier?
NPR — Is A Bigger Government Better?
Los Angeles Times — How much are we willing to pay for the pursuit of happiness?
CNN — Social safety net makes people happier
Huffington Post — Labor Unions: The Key to Happiness?