Well-being in Latin America

  • Annie AustinEmail author
Part of the Wellbeing in Politics and Policy book series (WPP)


This chapter presents evidence from Latin America in relation to the core principles and values of the political settings of well-being in the region. First, the Latin American Buen Vivir approach to well-being is discussed, and links to other approaches to well-being (such as Aristotelian ethics and Communitarianism) are explored. Next, the constitutions of a selection of Latin American countries are examined, with the aim of identifying the central principles of political conceptions of well-being. Evidence from the World Values Survey provides another perspective on the mass priorities of different countries in this region. The Latin American philosophy of buen vivir is a conception of the good that sees human beings as one part of a complex system of life, and human well-being as co-extensive with the well-being of the entire system. The buen vivir philosophy is based on radically different assumptions to conceptions of the good found elsewhere. Social relationships, the Natural environment, and connection to a higher dimension of truth and spirituality are the cornerstone values of buen vivir. The World Values Survey shows that social relationships, particularly family relationships, are at the heart of well-being in the countries studied.


Latin America Values Well-being Buen Vivir 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of ManchesterManchesterUK

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