Reanalysis of Sabrina Vieira Lima’s Data – with Updated Data

In my post Has Feminism Made Women Happier? A Comprehensive Review I summarized the results of several studies on the cross-country and regional association between feminism and female life satisfaction. One of the studies was a study published in 2011 by Sabrina Vieira Lima. I found that study through the citations of another study that I also used in the article. The citations was a URL, but has since gone dead. Thankfully, I saved the Vieira Lima study as a .pdf, because there doesn’t seem to be another copy of the study available online. So I’ve reupoloaded the study onto Scribd and it can be found here.

Not knowing why this study became so hard to find and not even knowing in what journal it was originally published, I decided to reanalyze some of the data and include more recent data.

Data & Methods:

One thing that was done in the Vieira Lima study was to correlate relative female happiness with various measures of a country’s level of women’s rights. It appears that she averaged each country’s male and female level of life satisfaction across every wave of the World Values Survey since each waves surveys a different set a countries and sometimes countries are surveyed in more than one wave. In my analysis I did the same thing but included the latest wave from 2010 to 2014. A new variable, relative female life satisfaction, was created by subtracting each country’s average female life satisfaction from its average male life satisfaction.

And for a measure of a country’s women’s rights Vieira Lima used  data from the CIRI Human Rights Data Project that evaluates the state of a country’s social, political, and economic rights for women on a scale from zero to three. In the original study, scores were averaged across all years (1981 to 2007) but in my analysis I included data from up until 2011. Also, as was done in the original study I created a new variable that is the average of the three aspects of women’s rights.


My results are similar to those obtained by Vieira Lima. Relative female life satisfaction was found to correlate negatively and significantly  with all of the women’s rights variables. In otherwords, countries with more women’s rights tend to have lower relative female life satisfaction.

This is a correlation matrix of all the variables measured:


And this is the results obtained by Vieira Lima:



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