Ageing International

, Volume 43, Issue 2, pp 190–206 | Cite as

Social Participation of the Elders in Europe: The Influence of Individual and Contextual Variables

  • M. Ángeles Molina
  • José L. Cañadas-Reche
  • Rafael Serrano-del-RosalEmail author


This study analyzes the social participation of older people based on individual and contextual variables. For this purpose the data of the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE) in particular waves 1, 2 and 4 have been used. A four-level model with fixed and random effects was carried out. The model obtained shows the effect of individual variables: a greater participation in more recent waves, in ages between 60-70 years and the effect of variables such as cognitive functioning, years of education and health self-perception. But significant differences were also found in participation in contextual variables and between countries. These results are important for public policy managers, who must take into account not only individual variables, but also contextual variables, which explain the differences in the participation rate of the elderly.


Social participation Aging Longitudinal studies Older in Europe 



This paper uses data from SHARE wave 4 release 1.1.1, as of March 28th 2013(DOI: 10.6103/SHARE.w4.111) and SHARE wave 1 and 2 release 2.6.0, as of November 29 2013 (DOI: 10.6103/SHARE.w1.260 and 10.6103/SHARE.w2.260). The SHARE data collection has been primarily funded by the European Commission through the 5th Framework Programme (project QLK6-CT-2001-00360 in the thematic programme Quality of Life), through the 6th Framework Programme (projects SHARE-I3, RII-CT-2006-062193, COMPARE, CIT5- CT-2005-028857, and SHARELIFE, CIT4-CT-2006-028812) and through the 7th Framework Programme (SHARE-PREP, N° 211909, SHARE-LEAP, N° 227822 and SHARE M4, N° 261982). Additional funding from the U.S. National Institute on Aging (U01 AG09740-13S2, P01 AG005842, P01 AG08291, P30 AG12815, R21 AG025169, Y1-AG-4553-01, IAG BSR06-11 and OGHA 04-064) and the German Ministry of Education and Research as well as from various national sources is gratefully acknowledged (see for a full list of funding institutions).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

Ethical Treatment of Experimental Subjects (Animal and Human)

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Universidad Francisco de VitoriaMadridSpain
  2. 2.MadridSpain
  3. 3.Institute for Advanced Social StudiesSpanish National Research Council, IESA (CSIC)CórdobaSpain

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