How much people enjoy their life-as-a-whole on scale 0 to 10

Technical details    Map    Cite as    Note: sort the table by mouse clicking a column heading.

Technical details

  1. Life-satisfaction is assessed by means of surveys in general population samples. Mean scores may be inflated in some countries due to under sampling of rural and illiterate population. This distortion is partly corrected by weighting afterwards. but may still affect the scores. This means that the real differences in  life-satisfaction are probably somewhat greater than appears in these data.

  2. Data from 2010 up to and including 2018. If the below mentioned questions had been used more than once in this era. the average score is used. Ten-year averages are used for two reasons: a) To cover a considerable number of nations. Since data is not available every year for most nations, presentation by one-year periods would would leave us with small numbers of mostly western nations. b) To reduce measurement bias. Random effect on responses in particular to surveys, such as the weather during the interview, will balance in an average of multiple surveys..

  3. The scores are based on responses to a question about satisfaction with life. The answers to which were rated on a numerical scale ranging from 'dissatisfied' to 'satisfied'. The questions differ slightly in wording and answer format. Most questions are type O-SLW/c/sq/n/10/a (used in the World value Surveys) and O-SLW/c/sq/n/11/a (used in the Gallup World Poll). This classification is explained in section 4/3 of the introductory text. Data were taken from the two tables with measure types regarding the 10-step numeral LifeSatisfaction and the 11-step numeral LifeSatisfaction from this collection of distributional findings on Happiness in Nations.
    Rating scales ranged from 1 to 10 or from 0 to 10. Scores on this 1-10 scale were transformed linearly to range 0-10. This transformation in explained in the introductory text. chapter 7.3.

  4. Scores of a specific set of nations are based on responses to a somewhat different question:
    "Suppose the top of the ladder represents the best possible life for you and the bottom of the ladder the worst possible life. Where on this ladder do you feel you personally stand at the present time?".
    The response was rated on a ladder scale ranging from 0 to 10 (question code C-BW/c/sq/l/11/a and c). Data were taken from the two tables with measure types regarding the 10-step Best-Worst possible life and the 11-step Best-Worst possible life from this database.
    We transformed the scores using the information of nations in which both this item and the above question on life-satisfaction had been used in about the same years. There are 103 such cases. The scores on the two items appears to be highly correlated: r = +.82 and examination of the scatterplot shows a linear pattern. We computed the regression equation and used these to estimate the score on 0-10 life-satisfaction.
    The formula is: Estimated 0-10 life satisfaction = 1.156 x observed score on the Best-Worst item - 0.457 . For the specific set of nations these estimates are reported. The 95% confidence interval around these estimated values is about 1.3 points. which means that these estimates are not very precise.

    The specific nations are: Afghanistan; Albania; Angola; Bahrein; Bangladesh; Belize; Benin; Bhutan; Bolivia; Bosnia Herzegovina; Botswana; Brazil; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Cambodia; Cameroon; Central African Republic; Chad; Comoros; Congo (Brazzaville); Congo (Kinshasa),; Costa Rica; Cote d Ivoire; Djibouti; Dominican Republic; El Salvador; Ethiopia; Gabon; Georgia; Guatemala; Guinea; Guyana; Haiti; Honduras; India; Indonesia; Iran; Jamaica; Kenya; Laos; Lesotho; Liberia; Libya; Macedonia; Madagascar; Malawi; Mali; Mauritania; Mauritius; Moldova; Mongolia; Montenegro; Mozambique; Myanmar; Namibia; Nepal; Nicaragua; Niger; Oman; Panama; Paraguay; Puerto Rico; Saudi Arabia; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Somalia; South Sudan; Sri Lanka; Sudan; Surinam; Swaziland; Syria; Tajikistan; Tanzania; Togo; Tunisia; Turkmenistan; Uganda; United Arab Emirates; Uzbekistan; Venezuela; Viet Nam; Yemen; Zambia;

    This estimation technique is described in more detail in the Introductory Text,
    chapter 7 'Comparability of the data' in section 7/3.1 'Converting scores on measures of different happiness variants'.
  5. On this list the following cases are left out: Puerto Rico (8.3). East Germany (6.4) and West Germany (7.0). These cases are included in the collection of Happiness in Nations but are no real 'nations'.

  6. Cuba and Myanmar were involved in the 2006 Gallup WorldPoll. but are not included in this list since the sample was restricted to urban people.

  7. The use for these data for estimating livability of nations is discussed in the Introductory Text to this section on 'Distributional Findings in Nations',
    chapter 5: Validity of happiness as an indicator of livability .

  8. This list is included in the datafile 'States of nations' as variable Happiness LSBW10.11_2005.14.

Cite as:
Veenhoven. R.. Average happiness in 162 nations 2010-2018. World Database of Happiness. Rank report Average Happiness. Internet: worlddatabaseofhappiness-archive.eur.nl/hap_nat/findingreports/RankReport_AverageHappiness.php