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Using British longitudinal data, we investigate whether individuals enjoy a permanent boost in their job satisfaction by becoming self-employed. We track individuals before and after transitions from work to self-employment and record changes in their job and domain satisfaction scores. We find that job satisfaction follows a rising trajectory immediately upon transition into self-employment and a declining trajectory in subsequent years, as expectations fail to materialize and the novelty of the new venture wanes down. Thus, our findings confirm that job satisfaction gains are not necessarily permanent, suggesting that self-employment is not always a panacea for job satisfaction.

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Journal Article

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