A Bifactor Model of Subjective Well-Being at Personal, Community, and Country Levels: A Case With Three Latin-American Countries

Javier Torres-Vallejos, Joel Juarros-Basterretxea, Juan Carlos Oyanedel, Masatoshi Sato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Improving citizens' subjective well-being (SWB) has become an increasingly visible policy goal across industrialized countries. Although an increasing number of studies have investigated SWB at the individual level, little is known about subjective evaluation at social levels, such as the community and national levels. While the relationships between these levels have been analyzed in previous research, these assessments, which are part of the same unique construct of SWB, are under-investigated. The purpose of this study was to examine the dimensionality and reliability of a single measure of SWB, which contained individual, community, and national levels across three Latin-American countries (Argentina, Chile, and Venezuela), using a bifactor model analysis. Findings showed that the bifactor model exhibited a good fit to the data for the three countries. However, invariance testing between countries was not fully supported because of each item's specific contribution to both specific and general constructs. The analyses of each country showed that the SWB construct was in a gray area between unidimensionality and multidimensionality; some factors contributed more to the general factor and others to the specific level, depending on the country. These findings call for integrating more distant levels (community and country levels) into the understanding of SWB at the individual level, as they contribute not only to an overall construct, but they make unique contributions to SWB, which must be considered in public policy making.

Original languageEnglish
Article number641641
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Volume12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jun 2021

Keywords

  • bifactor model
  • community
  • country
  • measurement
  • subjective well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)

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