Correlational finding on Happiness and subject: Overall degree of life-change

StudyBaruffol et al. (1995): study BE 1992
TitleLife Satisfaction as a Mediator between Distressing Events and Neurotic Impairment in a General Population.
SourceActa Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 1995, Vol. 92, 56 - 62
PublicAdults, community, Belgium, 1990-1992
SampleProbability simple random sample
Non-ResponseT1- T2 attrition: 49%
Respondents N =184

Author's labeldistressing events and psychopathological status
Page in Source 57-59
Our classificationOverall degree of life-change
Presence of distressing life events between T1 and T2
0: absence of event
1: presence of event
Observed distributionN all:184; No neurotic disorder: 64%; anxiety16%; affective:11%; somatic:9%; any:24%; N respondents with number disorders:1 disorder:41; 2 disorders:15; 3 disorders:3
A 79-item checklist derived from the Psychiatric 
Epidemiology Research Interview Life Event 
Scale(PERI-LES) was used to appraise 1990-1992 

Observed Relation with Happiness
O-DT-u-sq-f-7-aChiČ=. p < .02
T1 happiness by T1-T2 distressing events
Psychological disorders between T1 and T2
A: happy at T1(above mean)               
  a: no disturbing events T1-T2:         16%
  b: one or more disturbing events T1-T2:19%
B: unhappy at T1 (below mean)            
  a: no disturbing events T1-T2         :15%
  b: one or more disturbing events T1-T2:38%
Chi square: Bb>Ab.Ba
O-DT-u-sq-f-7-aOR=2.4 p < .05
Relative Risk Estimate 
Confidence Interval: 1.20-4.57
Risk Respondents (who were unhappy at T1 and 
experienced disturbing events between T1 and T2) 
has 2.4 times more chance to get a neurotic 
disorder than non-risk respondents
O-DT-u-sq-f-7-aChiČ=. p < .05
To determine the predictive power of each variable 
alone, the predictors were entered seperately into 
logistic equations: a simple one with 1 variable 
and the second model with 2 variables.
If one compares the simple model with the 2-term 
model results, one can see what model is the best: 
the one that produces the greatest change in 
scaled deviance(CD). Dependent is: neurotic 
CD for overall satisfaction=7.5

Appendix 1: Happiness measures used
CodeFull Text
O-DT-u-sq-f-7-aSelfreport on single question:

Which face comes closest to expressing feeling about life as a whole?
7 delighted
6 very satisfying
5 satisfying
4 mixed
3 dissatisfying
2 very dissatisfying
1 terrible
- No opinion

Name: Andrews & Withey's "Delighted-Terrible Scale" (modified

Appendix 2: Statistics used
Type: test statistic
Range: [0; Ne*(min(c,r)-1)], where c and r are the number of columns and rows respectively in a cross tabulation of Ne sample elements.

ChiČ <= (c-1) * (r-1) means: no or minor association
ChiČ >> (c-1) * (r-1) means: strong association
OROR: Odds ratio in binary logistic regression.

Happiness is a binary or dichotomous variable with Happy =1 and Unhappy=0.

OR < 1 indicates that the odds of being happy-to-being unhappy
decreases by a factor OR when

1) the corresponding metric correlate increases by one unit
2) the corresponding category of a categorical correlate is compared to the reference category.

OR > 1 indicates an increase by a factor OR for both the above cases.
Ruut Veenhoven, World Database of Happiness, Collection of Correlational Findings, Erasmus University Rotterdam.