Journal of Happiness Studies

, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 129–152 | Cite as

Employment and Family as Determinants of Anticipated Life Satisfaction: Contrasting Young Adults’ and Elderly People’s Viewpoints

  • Badiâa Bouazzaoui
  • Etienne MulletEmail author


The objective of the present study was to examine the relationship between life satisfaction, personal employment, spouse employment, and family responsibilities as perceived by lay people and, in particular, to study the extent to which the additive threshold model evidenced by Macri and Mullet (2002) in a Greek sample of respondents can be generalized to other samples. One hundred young French adults and 100 elderly French people were presented with several vignettes depicting family conditions in terms of the three variables. Their task was to rate each vignette in terms of anticipated life satisfaction. The rule, which best accounted for anticipated satisfaction with life judgments was the hypothesized additive threshold rule. It may be expressed as anticipated satisfaction = proximity to optimal personal employment level + proximity to spouse optimal employment level + proximity to optimal family size, as long as acceptable personal and spouse employment levels are considered. This rule was common to young and elderly participants and largely independent of educational level.

employment family elderly people life-satisfaction beliefs 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Plaisance-du-TouchFrance

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