Intergenerational Mobility and Life Satisfaction in Spain

Palencia-Esteban, A., & Salas-Rojo, P. (2023). Intergenerational Mobility and Life Satisfaction in Spain. In Mobility and Inequality Trends (Vol. 30, pp. 109-137). Emerald Publishing Limited.



This chapter explores the relation between personal well-being – measured with life satisfaction – and intergenerational mobility in Spain (2017). We start by applying machine learning techniques to overcome traditional data limitations and estimate intergenerational income mobility. Then, by means of several econometric specifications, we find the relation between personal well-being and intergenerational income mobility to be non-significant. This result is robust to several measures of educational and occupational mobility. Contrary to the comparison theory, if Spanish citizens derive well-being benefits or losses from intergenerational mobility, these effects are not permanent and dissipate with time. We find other variables, such as enjoying good health, higher income levels and marriage, to be positively associated with life satisfaction. Overall, personal well-being in Spain is more related to materialistic aspects rather than to the comparison of individuals’ current position against the previous generations’ socio-economic status.



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