Sandu 2/2009

Sociologie Românească, Vol. VII, no. 2/2009, pp. 3-26.




Lumi sociale de vârstă şi rezidenţă în Uniunea Europeană

Age and residence-specific social worlds in the European Union

Dumitru Sandu*


*University of Bucharest


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Abstract: To what degree age and residence categories combined count for the state of mind and social discourse of the population in the European Union at the current time? Are there age-residence social worlds, according to Anselm Strauss.s definition from the grounded theory (1993)? If so, what is the relevance of such worlds by sociocultural macroregions of the EU? These are the basic questions of the study. The approach is in line with the idea of .quantitative grounded theory. (Glaser, 2008) and the data to explore and test are from the Eurobarometer survey, the 70th wave from the fall of 2008. The worlds of age-residence categories are analyzed from the point of view of life satisfaction, optimism, institutional trust and propensity to discuss politics. The findings support not only the hypothesis of age-residence conditional matrix but also the idea that the age-residence social worlds are also highly differentiated by sociocultural macroregions of the EU. These macroregions are identified by powerful indicators included into a cluster analysis. The resulted regions (EAST, CENTRAL-EAST, SOUTH, WEST, NORTH) are more relevant for the sociocultural analysis than the pure geographical ones. The age-residence and macroregion factors continue to be significant predictors for social state of mind variables even after controlling, by multiple regression, many other relevant predictors.

Keywords: social worlds, life satisfaction, social types of satisfaction-optimism, institutional trust.

Cuvinte-cheie: lumi sociale, satisfacţie faţă de viaţă, tipuri sociale de satisfacţie-optimism, încredere instituţională, macroregiuni socioculturale ale UE.