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Responding to environmental concerns, many countries are restructuring their electricity supply. In this video, HEINZ WELSCH examines the nature of the relationship between electricity supply structure and citizen well-being. Combining data from the European Social Survey with information on different national electricity supply models, among the study’s findings is the observation that though wind energy is generally associated with improved citizen well-being, negative effects can also be observed, especially in the early years after the construction of a wind farm. Encouraging further work on electricity transmission as well as generation, Welsch’s work provides an important model for how future research can engage with concepts like “wellness” and “well-being”, previously held to be outside of the remit of economic analysis.


Heinz Welsch is an Emeritus Professor of Economics at Oldenburg University. Having completed his Ph.D. at the University of Cologne, he previously held research posts at Cologne and at the University of Bonn. His main research interests include Environmental Economics, Behavioral Economics, and Subjective Well-being. For many years, Welsch chaired the Scientific Advisory Board of the Bremer Energie Institut (BEI) and he sat on the Advisory Board of the Centre for European Economic Research (ZEW).

Original publication

Measuring Renewable Energy Externalities: Evidence from Subjective Well-being Data

Welsch Heinz and von Möllendorff Charlotte
Land Economics
Published in 2017

Electricity Supply Preferences in Europe: Evidence from Subjective Well-being Data

Welsch Heinz and Biermann Philipp
Resource and Energy Economics
Published in 2014