Social Indicators Research

, Volume 128, Issue 2, pp 859–880 | Cite as

On the Confluence of Freedom of the Press, Control of Corruption and Societal Welfare

  • Christopher L. Ambrey
  • Christopher M. FlemingEmail author
  • Matthew Manning
  • Christine Smith


This paper employs data from 135 countries to investigate the role a free press plays in controlling corruption and the extent to which this may lead to greater national income and enhanced societal welfare (as measured by self-reported life satisfaction). Results suggest that freedom of the press, through enabling the control of corruption, is associated with increased real GDP per capita and (independently) higher life satisfaction. This provides further motivation for policy makers to give greater recognition to the aspects of societal welfare not readily encapsulated within conventional measures of national income.


Corruption Freedom of the press Life satisfaction World Happiness Database 



An earlier version of this paper was presented at the 2014 SIBR-RDINRRU Conference on Interdisciplinary Business and Economics Research, Hong Kong; we thank participants for providing valuable feedback and comments.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christopher L. Ambrey
    • 1
  • Christopher M. Fleming
    • 2
    Email author
  • Matthew Manning
    • 3
  • Christine Smith
    • 2
  1. 1.Urban Research ProgramGriffith University, Gold Coast CampusNathanAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Accounting, Finance and EconomicsGriffith University, Nathan CampusNathanAustralia
  3. 3.Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research, Copland Building No. 24The Australian National UniversityCanberraAustralia

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