Correlational findings

Study Veenhoven (1999a): study ZZ 1992

Adults, general public, 43 nations, early 1990's
N = 50000
Non Response:
Interview: face-to-face


Authors's label
Opportunity to choose (negative freedom)
Our Classification
Index of
a. Political freedom
(assessed by inquiries among experts, which consider legislation and practice on 11 dimensions. Both civil and political rights are condensed in one score.)
b. Economic freedom:
Expert ratings of economic freedom in nations on four aspects:
- security of the money one has
- freedom to produce/consume what one wants
- freedom to keep what one earns
- freedom of exchange
(Condensed in one score)
c. Personal freedom
(Index of:
A Official limits in freedom of abortion
B Informal limits on freedom as apparent in public rejection or acceptance of:
    - divorce
    - abortion
    - sterilization
    - homo-sexuality
    - prostitution
    - suicide
    - euthanasia
(Condensed in one score)
a, b, c combined in one factor.

Observed Relation with Happiness

Happiness Measure Statistics Elaboration / Remarks O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a r = +.57 p < .01 Average happiness by average freedom in 31 nations O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a rpc = +.03 rpc controlled for economic affluence O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a r = -.17 poor countries only O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a r = +.30 rich countries only O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a rpc = -.32 poor countries only, rpc controlled for economic affluence O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a rpc = +.22 rich countries only, rpc controlled for economic affluence O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a rpc = -.29 nations of low capability to choose O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a rpc = +.11 nations of high capability to choose O-HL-u-sq-v-4-a = Capability to choose in nations measured by education (adult literacy and school enrollment ratio) and media attendence (newspaper circulation and TV's pc) combined in a factor score