Differences in subjective well-being within households: An analysis of married and cohabiting couples in South Africa

2017-12-19 11:10:38 Viewed: 589 Downloads: 128
  • Differences in subjective well-being within households: An analysis of married and cohabiting couples in South Africa

      Dorit Posel and Daniela Casale

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    Pub: 2017-12-19 11:10:38

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  • We investigate differences in subjective well-being (life satisfaction) within the
    household using matched data on co-resident couples drawn from the 2008
    national Income Dynamics study for south Africa. the majority of men and
    women in co-resident partnerships report different levels of subjective wellbeing. We use regression analysis first to explore the correlates of subjective
    well-being among women, and among men, who are married or cohabiting.
    We then estimate the predictors of within-couple differences in life satisfaction.
    our results suggest that a number of correlates, related particularly to the roles
    and responsibilities of women and men in the household, differ by gender and
    also predict differences in subjective well-being within couples. For example,
    access to piped water on site increases the subjective well-being of women
    in comparison both to other married or cohabiting women and to the woman’s
    partner, but it does not account for differences in subjective well-being among
    married or cohabiting men. In contrast, the presence of young children in the
    household lowers the subjective well-being of women, while there is no such relationship for men. Furthermore, within couples, women’s relative satisfaction
    falls with the presence of young children in the household.

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  • Keywords

    Happiness gaps, intra-household allocation, life satisfaction, subjective well-being


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