Advertisement

Are Education and Occupational Status Affecting Men’s and Women’s Satisfaction in Different Ways? A Cross-National Perspective on Gender Inequality

  • Mª del Mar Salinas-JiménezEmail author
  • Joaquín Artés
  • Javier Salinas-Jiménez
Part of the International Handbooks of Quality-of-Life book series (IHQL)

Abstract

In this chapter we analyze the factors behind life satisfaction of men and women, focusing on the role played by educational attainment and different patterns of work. Account is also taken of the social context as regards gender inequality since similar working status might lead to different perceptions of wellbeing depending on whether or not the individuals follow the prevailing gender roles in their societies. Among the results, it is found that no gender differences in wellbeing appear in countries with low gender inequality. Moreover, whereas in countries with less gender inequality the effects of education and occupation tend to be rather similar across genders, in less gender egalitarian societies the effects of education on men’s satisfaction manifest only through enhanced job opportunities and professional status. The results of this study tend to confirm that gender social roles matter to shape individual subjective wellbeing, being the gender social context a key element in explaining gender differences in life satisfaction and the factors behind subjective wellbeing of men and women living in different societies.

Keywords

Life satisfaction Gender Education Occupational status 

References

  1. Akerlof, G. A., & Kranton, R. E. (2000). Economics and identity. The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 115, 715–753.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Akerlof, G. A., & Kranton, R. E. (2002). Identity and schooling: Some lessons for the economics of education. Journal of Economic Literature, 40, 1167–1201.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Argyle, M. (1999). Causes and correlates of happiness. In D. Kahneman, E. Y. Diener, & N. Schwarz (Eds.), Well-being: The foundations of hedonic psychology. New York: Russell Sage.Google Scholar
  4. Becker, G. S. (1965). A theory of the allocation of time. Economic Journal, 75, 493–517.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bertrand, M. (2010). New perspectives on gender. Handbook of Labor Economics, 4, 1545–1592.Google Scholar
  6. Bjørnskov, C., Dreher, A., & Fischer, J. (2007). On gender inequality and life satisfaction: Does discrimination matter? (Department of economics working paper series 2007–07). St. Gallen: University of St. Gallen.Google Scholar
  7. Blanchflower, D., & Oswald, A. (2004). Well-being over time in Britain and the USA. Journal of Public Economics, 88, 1359–1386.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Blanchflower, D., & Oswald, A. (2011). International happiness (NBER working papers 16668). Cambridge, MA: National Bureau of Economic Research.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Booth, A. L., & Van Ours, J. C. (2009). Hours of work and gender identity: Does part-time work make the family happier? Economica, 76, 176–196.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Boye, K. (2009). Relatively different? How do gender differences in well-being depend on paid and unpaid work in Europe? Social Indicators Research, 93, 509–525.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Brody, L., & Hall, J. (1993). Gender and emotion. In M. Lewis & J. Haviland (Eds.), Handbook of emotions. New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
  12. Carrol, N. (2007). Unemployment and psychological well being. The Economic Record, 83, 287–302.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Chalmers, J., & Hill, T. (2007). Marginalising women in the labour market: ‘Wage scarring’ effects of part-time work. Australian Bulletin of Labour, 33, 180–201.Google Scholar
  14. Clark, A. (2003). Unemployment as a social norm: Psychological evidence from panel data. Journal of Labor Economics, 21, 323–351.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Clark, A., & Oswald, A. (1994). Unhappiness and unemployment. Economic Journal, 14, 648–659.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Clark, A., & Oswald, A. (1996). Satisfaction and comparison income. Journal of Public Economics, 61, 359–381.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Clark, A., Frijters, P., & Shields, M. (2008). Relative income, happiness, and utility: An explanation for the Easterlin paradox and other puzzles. Journal of Economic Literature, 46, 95–144.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Connolly, S., & Gregory, M. (2008). Moving down: Women’s part-time work and occupational change in Britain 1991–2001. Economic Journal, 118, F52–F76.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Della Giusta, M., Jewell, S. L., & Kambhampati, U. (2011). Gender and life satisfaction in the UK. Feminist Economics, 17, 1–34.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Di Cesare, M. C., & Amori, A. (2006). Gender and happiness in Italy. Paper presented at the 2006 meeting of the Population Association of America Annual Meeting, Los Angeles, CA. http://paa2006.princeton.edu/papers/60246
  21. Di Tella, R., MacCulloch, R. J., & Oswald, A. J. (2001). Preferences over inflation and unemployment: Evidence from surveys of happiness. American Economic Review, 91, 335–341.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Di Tella, R., MacCulloch, R. J., & Oswald, A. J. (2003). The macroeconomics of happiness. Review of Economics and Statistics, 85, 809–827.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Diener, E. (1984). Subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin, 95, 542–575.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Dolan, P., Peasgood, T., & White, M. (2008). Do we really know what makes us happy: A review of the economic literature on the factors associated with subjective well-being. Journal of Economic Psychology, 29, 94–122.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Easterlin, R. (2005). A puzzle for adaptive theory. Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 56, 513–521.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Ferrante, F. (2009). Education, aspirations and life satisfaction. Kyklos, 62, 542–562.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Ferrer-i-Carbonell, A., & Frijters, P. (2004). How important is methodology for the estimates of the determinants of hapiness? The Economic Journal, 114, 641–659.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Festinger, L. (1954). A theory of social comparison processes. Human Relations, 7, 117–140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Festinger, L. (1957). A theory of cognitive dissonance. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  30. Fortin, N. M. (2005). Gender role attitudes and the labour-market outcomes of women across OECD countries. Oxford Review of Economic Policy, 21, 416–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Frank, R. H. (2005). Does absolute income matter? In L. Bruni & P. L. Porta (Eds.), Economics & happiness: Framing the analysis. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  32. Frey, B., & Stutzer, A. (2002). Happiness and economics. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  33. Graham, C., & Chattopadhyay, S. (2013). Gender and well-being around the world. International Journal of Happiness and Development, 1, 212–232.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Hartog, J., & Oosterbeek, H. (1998). Health, wealth and happiness: Why pursue a higher education? Economics of Education Review, 17, 245–256.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Haveman, R. H., & Wolfe, B. L. (1984). Schooling and economic well-being: The role of nonmarket effects. The Journal of Human Resources, 19, 377–407.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Helliwell, J. F. (2003). How’s life? Combining individual and national variables to explain subjective well-being. Economic Modelling, 20, 331–360.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Herbst, C. (2011). ‘Paradoxical’ decline? Another look at the relative reduction in female happiness. Journal of Economic Psychology, 32, 773–788.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Kahneman, D., & Krueger, A. B. (2006). Developments in the measurement of subjective well-being. Journal of Economic Perspectives, 20, 3–24.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Kimmel, M. (2000). The gendered society. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  40. Mencarini, L., & Sironi, M. (2012). Happiness, housework and gender inequality in Europe. European Sociological Review, 28, 203–219.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Nolen-Hoeksema, S., & Rusting, C. L. (1999). Gender differences in well-being. In D. Kahneman, E. Diener, & N. Schwarz (Eds.), Well-being: The foundations of hedonic psychology. New York: Russell Sage.Google Scholar
  42. Pinquart, M. (2001). Correlates of subjective health in older adults: A meta-analysis. Psychology and Aging, 16, 414–426.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Putnam, R. (2000). Bowling alone: The collapse and revival of American community. New York: Simon and Schuster.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Russo, G., & Hassink, W. (2005). The part-time wage penalty: A career perspective (IZA discussion paper 1468). Bonn: Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).Google Scholar
  45. Salinas-Jiménez, M. M., Artés, J., & Salinas-Jiménez, J. (2013). How do educational attainment and occupational and wage earner statuses affect life satisfaction? A gender perspective study. Journal of Happiness Studies, 14, 367–388.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Sandvik, E., Diener, E., & Seidlitz, L. (1993). Subjective well-being: The convergence and stability of self-report and non-self-report measures. Journal of Personality, 61, 317–342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Schaafsma, J. (1976). The consumption and investment aspects of the demand for education. Journal of Human Resources, 11, 233–242.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Schultz, T. W. (1963). The economic value of education. New York: Columbia University Press.Google Scholar
  49. Slotkin, J. H. (2008). Rabenmutter and the glass ceiling: An analysis of role conflict experienced by women lawyers in Germany compared with women lawyers in the United States. California Western International Law Journal, 38, 287–330.Google Scholar
  50. Stevenson, B., & Wolfers, J. (2009). The paradox of declining female happiness. American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, 1, 190–225.Google Scholar
  51. Tesch-Romer, C., Motel-Klingebiel, A., & Tomasik, M. (2008). Gender differences in subjective well-being: Comparing societies with respect to gender equality. Social Indicators Research, 85, 329–349.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Treas, J., Van der Lippe, T., & Tai, T. C. (2011). The happy homemaker? Married women’s well-being in cross-national perspective. Social Forces, 90, 111–132.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Trzcinski, E., & Holst, E. (2012). Gender differences in subjective well-being in and out of management positions. Social Indicators Research, 107, 449–463.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Winkelmann, R. (2009). Unemployment, social capital, and subjective well-being. Journal of Happiness Studies, 10, 421–430.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mª del Mar Salinas-Jiménez
    • 1
    Email author
  • Joaquín Artés
    • 2
  • Javier Salinas-Jiménez
    • 3
  1. 1.Departamento de EconomíaUniversidad de ExtremaduraBadajozSpain
  2. 2.Departamento de Economía Aplicada IV, (Economía Política y Hacienda Pública), Facultad de DerechoUniversidad Complutense de MadridMadridSpain
  3. 3.Departamento de Economía y Hacienda Pública, Facultad de CC.EconómicasUniversidad Autónoma de Madrid, Ciudad Universitaria de CantoblancoMadridSpain

Personalised recommendations