Life quality and wealth : a qualitative and quantitative comparison of affluent and poor people
journal contributionposted on 01.12.2012, 00:00 authored by David MellorDavid Mellor, Robert CumminsRobert Cummins, T Loquet
It is well-documented that auent people, on average, have higher subjective wellbeing (SWB) than do poor people. is phenomenon has been explained using SWB homeostasis theory. However, a more precise understanding of the dierences in personal experience that lead to homeostatic failure remains to be documented. We sought such understanding through qualitative interviews and a quantitative examination of SWB domains. Twenty auent people and 20 people dependent on social welfare completed an interview and the Personal Wellbeing Index. As expected, the two groups diered signicantly in SWB. Moreover, the poor group reported a preponderance of negative life experiences while the auent group concentrated on the positive events in their lives. Most telling was the nding that both the qualitative and quantitative methods identied the area of ‘relationships’ as representing the greatest degree of divergence between the two groups. is life domain is especially relevant in the maintenance of normative levels of SWB.