Positive Affect and its Relationship with General Life Satisfaction among 10 and 12-Year-Old Children in 18 Countries

Ferran Casas, Xavier Oriol, Mònica González-Carrasco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Based on the Children’s Worlds sample of N = 41,599 children and adolescents from 18 countries, aims that have seldom been addressed in the scientific literature are considered: (a) an analysis of positive affect (PA) among 10 and 12-year-old children in 18 countries; (b) an analysis of the comparability of PA across countries, genders and age groups; and (c) a cross-country analysis of the relationship between PA and a measure of cognitive subjective well-being (SWB). A Confirmatory Factor Analysis of a PA measure (PA4), comprising the affects satisfied, happy, relaxed and active, was tested for the above purposes and displayed excellent fit indexes. Multi-group Structural Equation Models were tested by gender, age group and country. The results suggest all statistics are comparable across age groups and genders. Differences according to gender displayed very small effect size in the case of Romania and small effect size in the other 17 countries. A medium effect size was found for age differences in eleven of the countries, a small effect in six and a very small effect in the remaining one. Correlations and regressions are comparable across countries, whereas mean scores are only comparable among 12 out of 18 countries. A detailed analysis displays clear diversities among countries, but also outstanding similarities in children’s PA. A strong positive correlation (.735) was identified between Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita and the relationship between PA and OLS (Overall Life Satisfaction), while the GDP per capita correlation was not statistically significant with the PA or OLS individually.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2261-2290
Number of pages30
JournalChild Indicators Research
Issue number6
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 1 Jan 2020


  • adolescents, economic indicators
  • Children
  • Cross-country
  • General life satisfaction
  • Positive affect
  • Subjective well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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