Social Indicators Research

, Volume 138, Issue 3, pp 1279–1295 | Cite as

Objective and Subjective Health: An Analysis of Inequality for the European Union

  • Enrico Ivaldi
  • Guido Bonatti
  • Riccardo Soliani


In advanced societies, the right to health has a leading position within the instruments enshrined in the human rights. All countries, including those at the top of economic prosperity and human development, record systematic, often substantial, inequalities in mortality and morbidity between people with higher socio-economic position and poorer citizens. This also applies to the welfare states of western Europe. This work proposes two indicators of “objective” and “subjective” health for EU countries and verifies their relationship with income distribution. In the emerging picture, the “objective” and “subjective” dimensions seem to have their own explanations, affected variously by income differences. The results provide useful hints for social and health policy in European countries.


Objective and subjective health Inequality Pena distance Factor analysis 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Enrico Ivaldi
    • 1
  • Guido Bonatti
    • 2
  • Riccardo Soliani
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of GenovaGenoaItaly
  2. 2.Department of EconomicsUniversity of GenovaGenoaItaly

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