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Comparing Inequality in the Well-being of Children in Economically Advanced Countries: A methodology


  • Candace Currie
  • Dorothy Currie
  • Leonardo Menchini
  • Chris Roberts
  • Dominic Richardson


Socio-economic research on child well-being and the debate around child indicators has evolved quite rapidly in recent decades. An important contribution to this trend is represented by international comparative research based on multi-dimensional child well-being frameworks: most of this research is based on the comparison of average levels of well-being across countries. This paper tries to respond to the complex challenge of going beyond an approach based on averages and proposes a complementary approach to compare inequality in child well-being in economically advanced countries. In particular, it focuses on the disparities at the bottom-end of the child well-being distribution, by comparing the situation of the ‘median’ child and the situation of the children at the bottom of the well-being scale for nine indicators of material conditions, education and health.

Suggested Citation

  • Candace Currie & Dorothy Currie & Leonardo Menchini & Chris Roberts & Dominic Richardson, 2011. "Comparing Inequality in the Well-being of Children in Economically Advanced Countries: A methodology," Papers inwopa651, Innocenti Working Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucf:inwopa:inwopa651

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Micklewright, John, 2002. "Social exclusion and children: a European view for a US debate," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 6430, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    2. Jonathan Bradshaw & Petra Hoelscher & Dominic Richardson & *UNICEF, 2007. "Comparing Child Well-Being in OECD Countries: Concepts and methods," Papers inwopa07/38, Innocenti Working Papers.
    3. Jonathan Bradshaw & Petra Hoelscher & Dominic Richardson, 2007. "An Index of Child Well-being in the European Union," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 80(1), pages 133-177, January.
    4. Gerry Redmond, 2008. "Children's Perspectives on Economic Adversity: A review of the literature," Papers indipa08/2, Innocenti Discussion Papers.
    5. Pradhan, Menno & Sahn, David E. & Younger, Stephen D., 2003. "Decomposing world health inequality," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 22(2), pages 271-293, March.
    6. *Unicef, 2007. "Child Poverty in Perspective: An overview of child well-being in rich countries," Papers inreca07/19, Innocenti Report Card.
    7. Kristin Anderson Moore & Laura H. Lippman & Hugh McIntosh, 2009. "Positive Indicators of Child Well-being: A conceptual framework, measures and methodological issues," Papers inwopa580, Innocenti Working Papers.
    8. McKee, Martin & Suhrcke, Marc, 2010. "Investing in Health: A Contribution to the Achievement of the Lisbon Agenda," European Review, Cambridge University Press, vol. 18(01), pages 9-21, February.
    9. Chris Roberts & J. Freeman & O. Samdal & C. Schnohr & M. Looze & S. Nic Gabhainn & R. Iannotti & M. Rasmussen, 2009. "The Health Behaviour in School-aged Children (HBSC) study: methodological developments and current tensions," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 54(2), pages 140-150, September.
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    Cited by:

    1. Zlata Bruckauf & Yekaterina Chzhen & UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2016. "Education for All? Measuring inequality of educational outcomes among 15-year-olds across 39 industrialized nations," Papers inwopa843, Innocenti Working Papers.
    2. Yekaterina Chzhen & Zlata Bruckauf & Kwok Ng & Daria Pavlova & Torbjorn Torsheim & Margarida Gaspar de Matos & UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2016. "Inequalities in Adolescent Health and Life Satisfaction: Evidence from the Health Behaviour in School-aged Children study," Papers inwopa835, Innocenti Working Papers.
    3. Sophie D. Walsh & Zlata Bruckauf & Tania Gaspar & UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2016. "Adolescents at Risk: Psychosomatic health complaints, low life satisfaction, excessive sugar consumption and their relationship with cumulative risks," Papers inwopa844, Innocenti Working Papers.
    4. Yekaterina Chzhen & Irene Moor & William Pickett & Emilia Toczydlowska & Gonneke Stevens & UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2016. "Family Affluence and Inequality in Adolescent Health and Life Satisfaction: Evidence from the HBSC study 2002-2014," Papers inwopa836, Innocenti Working Papers.
    5. Zlata Bruckauf & Yekaterina Chzhen & Emilia Toczydlowska & UNICEF Innocenti Research Centre, 2016. "Bottom-end Inequality: Are children with an immigrant background at a disadvantage?," Papers inores841, Innocenti Research Briefs.

    More about this item


    child well-being; education; health; housing; industrialized countries; social conditions;

    JEL classification:

    • A10 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - General
    • H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue

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