Developing a national index of subjective wellbeing: the Australian unity wellbeing index

Cummins, Robert A., Eckersley, Richard, Pallant, Julie, van Vugt, Jackie and Misajon, RoseAnne 2003, Developing a national index of subjective wellbeing: the Australian unity wellbeing index, Social indicators research, vol. 64, no. 2, pp. 159-190, doi: 10.1023/A:1024704320683.

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Title Developing a national index of subjective wellbeing: the Australian unity wellbeing index
Author(s) Cummins, Robert A.ORCID iD for Cummins, Robert A.
Eckersley, Richard
Pallant, Julie
van Vugt, Jackie
Misajon, RoseAnne
Journal name Social indicators research
Volume number 64
Issue number 2
Start page 159
End page 190
Publisher Reidel Pub. Co
Place of publication Dordrecht, Netherlands
Publication date 2003-11
ISSN 0303-8300
Keyword(s) National index
Social indicators
Subjective wellbeing
Summary The Australian Unity Wellbeing Index has been designed as a new barometer of Australians' satisfaction with their lives, and life in Australia. It is based on, and develops, the theoretical model of subjective wellbeing homeostasis. The Index comprises two sub-scales of Personal and National Wellbeing. Data were collected through a nationally representative sample of 2,000 people in April/May 2001.Factor analysis confirmed the integrity of the two sub-scales and, confirming empirical expectation, the average level of life satisfaction was 75.5 percent of the scale maximum score. Group comparisons revealed that all age groups maintained their Personal Index score within the normal range. In addition,people in country areas were more satisfied with their personal lives than city-dwellers,but less satisfied about the national situation, and people who had recently experienced a strong positive event evidenced arise in wellbeing, whereas those who had experienced a strong negative event evidenced wellbeing in the low-normal range. It is argued that these data generally support homeostatic theory. However, an unusual result was that females were more satisfied with their own lives than males. A tentative argument is advanced that this may represent a constitutional difference. It is concluded that the Australian Unity Wellbeing Index has potential as a valid, reliable and sensitive instrument to monitor national wellbeing.
Language eng
DOI 10.1023/A:1024704320683
Field of Research 170113 Social and Community Psychology
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2003, Kluwer Academic Publishers
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Psychology
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