Distribución mundial de la satisfacción vital y sus determinantesel papel del contexto social y la religión

  1. Borja López-Noval
Dirixida por:
  1. Rafael Domínguez Martín Director

Universidade de defensa: Universidad de Cantabria

Ano de defensa: 2020

  1. Mariano Rojas Presidente/a
  2. Vanesa Jordá Gil Secretario/a
  3. Isabel Neira Gómez Vogal

Tipo: Tese

Teseo: 640693 DIALNET lock_openUCrea editor


Abstract: This thesis tries to contribute to general knowledge about the distribution of life satisfaction and its determinants across countries. There is a well-established model of world happiness that includes six factors: income, health, social support, freedom, generosity, and corruption – where the last four factors are key aspects of the social context. The model successfully explains variation in average life evaluations across countries, although it must be noted that (i) the importance of the different factors is not the same in all countries, (ii) the factors are strongly interrelated, and (iii) there is an important factor left in the error term of the model: culture, which may affect both average life evaluations and the interrelationships among the other factors. Moreover, it has not been completely explained why religiosity emerges as an important explaining factor at the individual level but not at the aggregate level. Consequently, in this thesis we first use cluster analysis to identify groups of similar countries in terms of the joint distribution of average life satisfaction and its determinants. We distinguish five groups of countries that are then compared with some groups usually considered by the literature. Besides, we identify four groups of countries that show distinct patterns in the joint distribution of some key aspects of the social context. Regarding the relationship between religiosity and life satisfaction at the aggregate level, we posit the hypothesis that the type of regulation or motivation underlying the observance of religious prescriptions may be confounding the relationship of interest. In fact, we find that once we control for the underlying motivation religiosity emerges positive and significantly associated with life satisfaction. On the other hand, the thesis shows a puzzling relationship between family ties and social support across countries, the analysis of which is left as a key future development of this research.