Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 19, Issue 8, pp 2315–2338 | Cite as

Europe 2020 Strategy and Citizens’ Life Satisfaction

  • Angeles SánchezEmail author
  • María J. Ruiz-Martos
Research Paper


The aim of this paper is to analyse whether the Europe 2020 Strategy approach might guide policymaking toward citizens’ life satisfaction. We find that the Member States closer to attaining the Europe 2020 targets report higher levels of satisfaction. That is, Europe 2020 Strategy, as a set of public policies, is aligned with people’s life satisfaction. In addition, and given the current context of rising economic and social inequalities in the European Union and their negative consequences for people’s well-being, we study whether an “inequality-extended Europe 2020 Strategy”, incorporating more specific targets for inequalities, is more aligned with European’s life satisfaction. Results show that inequality-extended Europe 2020 Strategy is more associated with life satisfaction than Europe 2020 Strategy. Thus inequalities do matter to European citizens and a refinement of the Europe 2020 Strategy could enhance the effectiveness of its programs.


Inequality Life satisfaction Well-being Composite index Public policy Crisis Europe 2020 Strategy 



The authors would like to thank the Financial Support from the Contract-Programme between Vice President for Science Policy and Research and the Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Granada.


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Applied Economy, Faculty of EconomicsUniversity of GranadaGranadaSpain
  2. 2.Department of Economic Theory, Faculty of EconomicsUniversity of GranadaGranadaSpain

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