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Investigating the Dimensions of Youth Wellbeing: An Exploratory Structural Equation Modelling Approach Applied to Palestine

Abu-Zaineh, M. and Woode, M. E

Child Indicators Research (2016).

Summary

This paper illustrates the “Sen-Nussbaum-type” capability approach to the measurement of youth wellbeing using the newly developed Exploratory Structural Equation Modelling (ESEM). It offers insights into how the capability to achieve wellbeing can be measured in a conflict-affected and resource-constrained setting. The methodology is applied to nationally representative data taken from the Palestinian Family Survey. The population of interest is youth aged 15 to 29. Three capability dimensions are identified: health awareness, knowledge and living conditions. Results show an interrelation between capability dimensions. It is especially important to note the effect of knowledge capabilities on both health awareness and living conditions indicators. Results also confirm the importance of some (exogenous) factors such as the education of the household head in the conversion of capabilities into achievements. Capabilities are shown to be highest in the West Bank for both knowledge and living conditions compared to the Gaza Strip.

Keywords

Capability approach, exploratory structural equation model, health knowledge, knowledge, wealth, wellbeing, developing countries, the occupied Palestinian territories.