The importance of national levels of eudaimonic well-being to life satisfaction in old age: a global study



The present study sought to test the hypotheses that the relationship between age and life satisfaction is moderated by five societal factors: (1) eudaimonic well-being (i.e., psycho-social functioning), (2) economic quality, (3) healthcare system efficiency, (4) globalization, and (5) national age.


This study was a cross-sectional analysis based on data from the Gallup World Poll. The sample consisted of 264,123 individuals across 133 countries. Multi-level modeling was used to analyze the data.


The results showed that out of the five moderators, only national levels of eudaimonic well-being robustly moderated the relationship between age and life satisfaction. The relationship between age and life satisfaction was negative in countries with low and moderate levels of eudaimonic well-being, and non-significant in countries with high levels of eudaimonic well-being.


It seems that a non-financial way to maintain higher levels of life satisfaction in aging populations is to enhance eudaimonic well-being. This can be achieved through interventions and policies targeted at individuals, groups, and organizations.

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Fig. 1


  1. 1.

    The moderation analysis was repeated with a different index of national age, and the moderation was again found to be non-significant. The percentage of each country’s population aged 65 and above in 2015 was used as the alternative index of national age (obtained from The correlation between the index used in the present study and the alternative index was 0.897 (p < .001, N = 133), suggesting a high level of consistency.


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This work was supported by the Ministry of Education of the Republic of Korea and the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF-2017S1A3A2066611).

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Correspondence to Mohsen Joshanloo.

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The data used in this study have been collected by Gallup. All procedures of data collection and data management are supervised by Gallup. The data are anonymized.

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Joshanloo, M., Sirgy, M.J. & Park, J. The importance of national levels of eudaimonic well-being to life satisfaction in old age: a global study. Qual Life Res 27, 3303–3311 (2018).

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  • Life satisfaction
  • Age
  • Eudaimonic well-being
  • Globalization
  • Healthcare