Gender differences in happiness
: A Cross-Country Study

  • Aubry Mbiendou

Student thesis: Master typesSpecialised Master in International and Development Economics


Our study attempts to assess the effect of economic growth on gender differences in happiness between 2005 and 2014. Using a sample of data covering 20 countries from the World Value Survey (WVS) applied to the difference-in-difference method by OLS regression estimators, we find that GDP per capita has a positive and significant impact on subjective well-being, but women have not benefited from the effects of growth as much as men, which explains their dissatisfaction in monetary terms while they become happier than men over time. However, men are more satisfied in financial situation (and therefore earnings) when women’s satisfaction is especially derived from marriage and common-law unions imply that GDP growth is not pro-women over the period as a whole. We recommend that government or decision-makers should aim at increasing women's human capital through access to high education, fighting against unequal opportunities between the sexes in the labor market, encourage women’s inclusion through entrepreneurship, subsidies and social security policies in their favor.
Date of Award16 Jun 2020
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • University of Namur
SupervisorGuilhem Cassan (Supervisor)


  • Happiness
  • Life satistifaction
  • gender differences
  • economic growth

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