Executive Summary

by Mindy E. Scott, W. Bradford Wilcox, Renee Ryberg, and Laurie DeRose

The World Family Map Project monitors the global health of the family by tracking 16 indicators of family structure, family socioeconomics, family processes, and family culture in multiple countries around the world. Each annual report of the project shares the latest data on these indicators, as well as an original essay focusing on one important aspect of contemporary family life. In both the indicators and the essay, we share the highest-quality data available for countries that are representative of each region of the world. Scholars around the globe serve as advisors and analysts for the project, stimulating a large community of researchers to gather new data and conduct innovative studies on families and children.


ESSAY: No One Best Way: Work, Family, and Happiness the World Over

by Laurie DeRose, Frances Goldscheider, Andrés Salazar, Paúl Corcuera, Montserrat Gas, Reynaldo Rivera, Claudia Tarud

In this section of the World Family Map report, we investigate how variations in union status and work-family arrangements are associated with men’s and women’s self-reported level of happiness. We document how couples with children divide market and domestic work in 32 countries; explore how the presence of children is related to how much work couples perform and how they divide it; and test the association of work-family arrangements with happiness among parents. Although happiness is more difficult to define and measure than objective, numerical indicators such as income levels, a large body of cross-national research suggests that happiness can be successfully compared across nations and used as an indicator of human thriving.1




Key Findings: Children’s lives are influenced by the resources and care provided by parents, siblings, and other adults that they live with, as well as by whether their parents are married. The World Family Map reports these key indicators of family structure in this section. READ MORE »


Key Findings: Socioeconomic indicators measure the material, human, and government resources that promote family and child well-being. To measure families’ socioeconomic status, here we examine indicators related to poverty, undernourishment (as a marker of material deprivation), parental education and employment, and public family benefits. READ MORE »


Key Findings: Family process indicators describe the interactions between members of a family, including their relationships, views on the roles of family members, time spent together, and satisfaction with family life. It is challenging to obtain data on family processes that allow for international comparisons, but there has been some improvement in this situation with the release of new data. READ MORE »


Key Findings:Family culture refers to the family-related attitudes and norms a country’s citizens express. Data suggest that adults take a range of progressive and conservative positions on family issues. READ MORE »


Selecting indicators: Along with advisors representing every region of the world, the study team selected indicators using a research-based conceptual framework of family strengths. We generated indicators in the following four domains: family structure, family socioeconomics, family process, and family culture. Indicators were chosen for each domain based on their importance to family and child well-being and on data availability, as well as a concern for regional representation and balance in the number of indicators across domains. READ MORE »


Country-level Sources

When data were not available from an international survey, country-level data sources were sought. Examples include data from national statistics bureaus and country-level surveys. READ MORE »

SUPPLEMENT: Division of Paid and Domestic Work Among Peruvian Couples

by Gloria Huarcaya and Luis A. Álvarez

Data from the 2010 ENUT (National Survey about Usage of Time) allow us to compare the division of paid and domestic work among couples in Peru to the division of labor among couples in countries that participated in the 2012 International Social Survey Programme (ISSP). There were 2,075 couples surveyed in the ENUT that met the selection criteria explained in the Data and Methods section.