Wing Laam NG

Date of Award


Degree Type

TPG Capstone Project (Taught Postgraduate Project)


Sociology and Social Policy


Prof. Stefan KÜHNER


There is no lack of literature talking about the relationship between well-being and democracy. However, little research has been done by separating the area. This study is going to explore the association between democracy and well-being again by separating the countries in Europe and Asia. Well-being is measured by life satisfaction, positive affect, negative affect and satisfaction towards the government while democracy refers to the Democracy Index by the Economist Intelligence Unit. In total, thirty one European countries and seventeen Asian countries are selected based on the availability of data and exclusion of Asia-Europe border countries. Pearson correlation coefficient and regression analysis are both used, to examine the correlation between democracy and each dimension of well-being first, and followed by taking the impact of economy, age, gender, gender inequality and health as controlled variables into account. By using pearson correlation coefficient, it is found that the correlation in Europe tends to be strong but weak or even no correlation for Asia. By using regression analysis, a small effect of democracy on well-being has been found in Europe after controlling for other factors and the effect is focusing on the positive affect. Meanwhile, the impact of health on well-being is relatively higher than democracy. However, it is not in evidence for democracy affect well-being within the countries in Asia and cannot find out related factors. On one hand, the divergence between Europe and Asia may be due to the difference of culture, religions, the conception of wellbeing, and the level of democracy within these two areas. Case study includes Belarus as the only authoritarian regime but not the worst well-being in Europe, and China where providing another idea that democracy is not necessarily the cornerstone of well-being. On the other hand, the importance of health to an individual may precede democracy and health also gives a more direct impact on well-being rather than democracy. This research may take the first step to exploring the relationship by separating the area and it provides a new understanding that there is a difference of the relationship between democracy and well-being, within the area of Europe and Asia.



Recommended Citation

Ng, W. L. (2021). Understanding how democracy shapes well-being of countries in Europe and Asia (TPG Capstone Project, Lingnan University, Hong Kong). Retrieved from

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