IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Perceptions of the Economic Crisis in Europe: Do Adults in Households with Children Feel a Greater Impact?


  • Yekaterina Chzhen

    () (UNICEF Office of Research)


Abstract More than 5 years since the outbreak of the global financial crisis, a flurry of evidence is emerging on the effects of the ensuing economic downturn on unemployment and poverty rates in rich countries, but less is known about cross-country differences in subjective assessments of the crisis and whether adults in households with children were affected to a greater extent. This paper investigates differences in the perceived impact of the economic crisis between adults in households with and without children in 17 European countries, using data from the Life in Transition Survey 2010 in a multilevel modelling framework. It also explores differences in the coping strategies that households adopted to deal with the decline in income or economic activity. Everything else being equal, perceptions of the crisis were more widespread in countries with higher rates of child poverty, lower economic growth and lower GDP per capita. Across countries, perceptions of the crisis closely trailed subjective indicators of financial difficulties from other international surveys conducted in 2010. Adults in households with children were more likely to report an impact of the crisis, with larger differences in countries with higher rates of monetary child poverty. Adults in households with children also adopted a greater variety of coping strategies than the rest, prioritizing expenditure on basic necessities, while cutting back on luxuries and holidays. Nevertheless, many still reported reduced consumption of staple foods as a result of economic difficulties.

Suggested Citation

  • Yekaterina Chzhen, 2016. "Perceptions of the Economic Crisis in Europe: Do Adults in Households with Children Feel a Greater Impact?," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 127(1), pages 341-360, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:soinre:v:127:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-015-0956-z
    DOI: 10.1007/s11205-015-0956-z

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    File Function: Abstract
    Download Restriction: Access to the full text of the articles in this series is restricted.

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Annamaria Lusardi & Daniel Schneider & Peter Tufano, 2011. "Financially Fragile Households: Evidence and Implications," Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Economic Studies Program, The Brookings Institution, vol. 42(1 (Spring), pages 83-150.
    2. Dora Gudmundsdottir, 2013. "The Impact of Economic Crisis on Happiness," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 110(3), pages 1083-1101, February.
    3. Goran Holmqvist & Luisa Natali, 2014. "Exploring the Late Impact of the Financial Crisis using Gallup World Poll Data," Papers inwopa728, Innocenti Working Papers.
    4. Joseph Deutsch & Anne-Catherine Guio & Marco Pomati & Jacques Silber, 2015. "Material Deprivation in Europe: Which Expenditures are Curtailed First?," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 120(3), pages 723-740, February.
    5. Jonathan Bradshaw & Yekaterina Chzhen & Gill Main & Bruno Martorano & Leonardo Menchini & Chris De Neubourg, 2012. "Relative Income Poverty among Children in Rich Countries," Papers inwopa655, Innocenti Working Papers.
    6. Yekaterina Chzhen, 2014. "Child Poverty and Material Deprivation in the European Union during the Great Recession," Papers inwopa723, Innocenti Working Papers.
    7. Bruno Martorano, 2014. "The Consequences of the Recent Economic Crisis and Government Reactions for Children," Papers inwopa722, Innocenti Working Papers.
    8. Luisa Natali & Bruno Martorano & Sudhanshu Handa & Goran Holmqvist & Yekaterina Chzhen, 2014. "Trends in Child Well-being in EU Countries during the Great Recession: A cross-country comparative perspective," Papers inwopa730, Innocenti Working Papers.
    9. Ronald Mendoza, 2009. "Aggregate Shocks, Poor Household and Children: Transmission Channels and Policy Responses," Working papers 0901, UNICEF,Division of Policy and Strategy.
    10. Mattias Lundberg & Alice Wuermli, 2012. "Children and Youth in Crisis : Protecting and Promoting Human Development in Times of Economic Shocks," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 9374.
    11. Bidani, Benu & Fatou Diagne, Mame & Zaidi, Salman, 2012. "Subjective perceptions of the impact of the global economic crisis in Europe and Central Asia : the household perspective," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5995, The World Bank.
    12. John Helliwell & Haifang Huang & Shun Wang, 2014. "Social Capital and Well-Being in Times of Crisis," Journal of Happiness Studies, Springer, vol. 15(1), pages 145-162, February.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Elena Bárcena-Martín & M. Carmen Blanco-Arana & Salvador Pérez-Moreno, 2017. "Dynamics of child poverty in the European countries," Working Papers 437, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:spr:soinre:v:127:y:2016:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-015-0956-z. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Sonal Shukla) or (Rebekah McClure). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.