Image of

Happiness and childbearing across Europe

Number: 10
Year: 2008
Author(s): Arnstein Aassve, Maria Sironi, Alice Goisis
Keywords: happiness,childbearing,European social survey,ESS
In this paper we analyse the relationship between happiness and childbearing taking a comparative perspective. We argue that fertility and happiness are somewhat linked and we investigate whether there are important differences across European countries. Using happiness as a welfare measure offers important benefits over income especially when interest lies in understanding how individuals' wellbeing is associated with childbearing outcomes. We use the European Social Survey (ESS) and apply simple regression techniques, controlling for country differences, and find indeed a positive and significant association between happiness and childbearing. However, parents do not appear to be consistently happier in some countries than in others. The final set of analyses reveals a very strong interconnection between, childbearing, partnership and happiness.

Arnstein Aassve

Univerista Bocconi, Dondena Centre for Research on Social Dynamics

 

Maria Sironi

Univerista Bocconi, Dondena Centre for Research on Social Dynamics

 

Alice Goisis

Univerista Bocconi, Dondena Centre for Research on Social Dynamics

 

 

Keywords: happiness, childbearing, European social survey, ESS

(version 2, July 2009)

Download: The paper may be downloaded here.