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Gender differences in the importance of family and social relations for life satisfaction among elderly Japanese

  • Oshio, Takashi
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    Objectives. The purpose of this study is to investigate how the associations of life satisfaction with family and social relations differ between elderly men and women in Japan. Methods. Ordered logit models were estimated to explain life satisfaction with a rich set of explanatory variables, using micro data from 3,063 Japanese elderly adults (1,565 men and 1,498 women) collected from the first-wave sample of the Japanese Study of Aging and Retirement (JSTAR), a survey compatible with the HRS in the United States and SHARE in Europe. Results. This study found that life satisfaction is more closely associated with family and social relations for women than for men, after controlling for socioeconomic, health, and other factors. Women are more sensitive than men to coresidence and contact with family members, especially parents-in-law, as well as to social relations with others in the community, while men are much more depressed than women by divorce or widowhood. Discussion. Observed associations between each factor and life satisfaction are largely consistent with those separately reported by preceding studies. However, this analysis compared the relative importance of each factor and its gender difference, contributing to a more comprehensive understanding of subjective well-being of elderly people.

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    File URL: http://hermes-ir.lib.hit-u.ac.jp/rs/bitstream/10086/18830/1/pie_dp497.pdf
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    Paper provided by Center for Intergenerational Studies, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University in its series PIE/CIS Discussion Paper with number 497.

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    Length: 28 p.
    Date of creation: Jan 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:hit:piecis:497
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    1. DiTella, Rafael & MacCulloch, Robert & Oswald, Andrew J., 2001. "Preferences over inflation and unemployment: Evidence from surveys of happiness," ZEI Working Papers B 03-2001, ZEI - Center for European Integration Studies, University of Bonn.
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