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Sen's Concept of the Living Standard applied to the Belgian Unemployed

Erik SCHOKKAERT and Luc VAN OOTEGEM
Recherches Économiques de Louvain / Louvain Economic Review
Vol. 56, No. 3/4, Alternatives to Welfarism (1990), pp. 429-450
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40723936
Page Count: 22
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Sen's Concept of the Living Standard applied to the Belgian Unemployed
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Abstract

Notre article vise à rendre opérationnel le concept de niveau de vie tel qu'il est avancé par Sen, en utilisant des données provenant de questionnaires sur la situation économique des chômeurs beiges. L'analyse factorielle est utilisée pour réduire le nombre des "fonctionnements" fondamentaux et d'éviter les recoupements. Les éléments qui ressortent sont: les sentiments d'isolement, de bonheur, de forme physique, de contact micro-social, de degré d'activité et de situation financifère. Les scores obtenus sur ces différents facteurs sont significativement reliés aux caractéristiques socio-économiques des personnes interrogées. We try to operationalise Sen's concept of the living standard using questionnaire data on the economic situation of the Belgian unemployed. We use factor analysis to reduce the number of basic functionings and to avoid possible overlap between them. The factors obtained can be interpreted in a natural and transparent way : they refer to social isolation, general feeling of happiness, physical functioning, microsocial contact, degree of activity and financial situation. Factor scores on these functionings are related in a meaningful way to the socioeconomic characteristics of the respondents.

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