SUICIDES FOR ECONOMIC REASONS AS A MEASURE OF THE STATE OF THE ECONOMY: THE CASE OF POLAND

Jarosław Ziętarski, Agnieszka Pobłocka

Abstract


Suicides are a phenomenon observed in many countries. The causes of a decision so drastic as far as the consequences are concerned include i.a. economic reasons. The question arises whether the changing number of suicides reflects the state of the economy. The direct link between the state of the economy and suicides has not been sufficiently studied so far. The authors of this article attempted to identify the links between selected economic indicators and the number of suicides using statistical and econometric methods. The end result is a description of the connection between indicators determining economic tendencies and suicides for economic reasons. Finding such a connection constitutes an alternative, much cheaper method of assessing the tendencies (climate) of the economy compared to the methods used currently by the Central Statistical Office in Poland or the Ipsos company. In addition, the results of the study allowed to propose an original linear regression model taking into account new variables, compared to the available studies of other authors. The authors' model is an expansion of rather modest scientific discourse on the impact of the economy on the number of suicides.

More than 10 years have passed since the beginning of the global financial crisis. In the years 2008–2009, Poland was considered to be 'a green island', i.e. the only country in Europe that did not experience a decline in GDP. The image of this country from the perspective of the consumer looks very different. The increasing number of suicides for economic reasons prompts the analysis of the reasons for this kind of decision. There are relatively few available research papers that would illustrate the link between the state of the economy and the phenomenon of suicides. The authors of this publication, using statistical methods (statistical description and statistical inference), attempted to link the number of suicides for economic reasons to selected economic indicators. The result of the research was the indication of an alternative method for the measurement of selected economic tendency indices of the Polish Central Statistical Office and the Economic Climate Indicator published by Ipsos Polska Sp. z o.o. In addition, a single-equation linear regression model was proposed which not only explains the association of selected indicators describing the condition of an economy with the phenomenon of suicides but can also serve as an early-warning indicator of future suicides

Keywords


suicides; suicide warning model; suicides for economic reasons; economic climate indicator; economic tendency index

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