- Life-satisfaction is assessed by means of surveys in general population samples in nations.
A typical survey question reads:
Taking all together, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your life as a whole these days? Please answer by picking a number on the scale below
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
very dissatisfied very satisfied
- Data from 2010 up to and including 2019.
If the below mentioned questions had been used more than once in this era. the average score is used.
- Ten-year averages are used for two reasons:
– To cover a considerable number of nations. Since data is not available every year for most nations, presentation by one-year periods would leave us with small numbers of mostly western nations.
– To reduce measurement bias. Random effect on responses in particular to surveys, such as the weather during the interview, will balance in an average of multiple surveys.
- The scores are based on responses to a question about satisfaction with life, the answers to which were rated on a numerical scale of at least 10 steps. Questions of this kind are in the core questionnaire of the World Values Survey (measure code O-SLW-c-sq-n-10-a and the European Social Survey (measure code O-SLW-c-sq-n-11-cd).
These questions differ slightly in wording and answer format and are homogenized as follows:
– Questions are sorted into equivalent measure types, which procedure is described in section 7/2.3 Equivalent questions of the introductory text to this collection of distributional findings on happiness in nations.
– Data were taken from the tables for type 10-step numeral Life Satisfaction and the 11-step numeral Life Satisfaction.
- Responses to above-mentioned questions on life-satisfaction are available for 96 nations during this period. For 64 nations in which no such questions had been used we estimated average life-satisfaction using scores on two measures of components of happiness.
– a measure of the affective component of happiness ( A-AB-yd-mq-v-2-fb or A-AB-yd-mq-v-2-tb)
– a question on the cognitive component of happiness ( C-BW-c-sq-l-11-c).
Using a set of 115 nations in which all three measure types had been used over the years 2006-2919, we calculated the combination of the two component measures that best predict overall life-satisfaction. This estimation is described in EHERO working paper 2021-3.
- The resulting measure is coded: O-SLW-*sqi-nt-11-a
- The use for these data for estimating livability of nations is discussed in the Introductory Text to this section on ‘Distributional Findings in Nations’, chapter 5: Validity of happiness as an indicator of livability
- This list is included in the data file ‘States of nations‘ as variable HappinessLSBW10.11_PlusImputations_2010s.
Rank report Average Happiness in Nations 2010-2019