My Latest Quality-of-Life related Works to Share with ISQOLS Community
Institute of Asian Cultures
J. F. Oberlin University (Tokyo)
*I acknowledge gratefully the comments made by Prof. Richard J. Estes on an earlier draft of this piece.
Since I was given the honor of delivering the Alex Michalos Lecture at the 2017 ISQOLS annual conference at Hong Kong Polytechnic University (Inoguchi, 2017), two developments have taken place in my quality of life related research. One is the revised enriched publication of my lecture in Hong Kong.
These more recent findings are reported in the forthcoming book chapter:
Takashi Inoguchi, "An evidence-based typology of Asian societies: What do Asian societies look like from the bottom up instead of top down?" in Takashi Inoguchi, ed., The Sage Handbook of Asian Foreign Policy, vol.2, London: Sage Publications, forthcoming in February 2020.
My theoretical typology of societies has two key merits: (1) evidence-based; and, (2) bottom up. In the author's view, this typology is unique, original and innovative in that daily life satisfaction is taken up to construct the characteristics of a society whereby cross-national comparative measures determine the various social, political, and economic dimensions of individual society. I have attempted to identify adequate public policy scheme in the United Nations 'Sustainable Development Goals' project--one of my current interests that overlap with the typology’s various dimensions. I explain why my scheme would be immensely helpful. Thirty-seven sustainable development goals need the good grasp of people's satisfaction with daily life in sixteen domains (housing, standard of living, household income, health, education, job, friendships, marriage, neighbors, family life, leisure, spiritual life, public safety, conditions of the environment, social welfare system, democratic system) on top of the empirical reality of developmental achievements and prospects.
Examining selected aspects of various UN Sustainable Development Goals reports convinces me of the need to know where people--neither the national government and its relevant bureaucratic agencies nor UN and international specialized organizations, nor business--are dissatisfied and therefore seeking advice as to how to prioritize the attention and advice of the national government, UN agencies, businesses. People's real dissatisfactions here and there are gauged by grass-roots-level opinion polls. Otherwise, UN SDGs will end up with the highly technocratic exercise.
Fortuitously, The Financial Times (FT) calls a better form of capitalism, which points to the same weakness as the UN SDGs scheme, i.e., stakeholder capitalism with those holding stocks reigning supreme. FT says: “The long-term health of free enterprise capitalism will depend on delivering profit with purpose. Companies will come to understand that this combination serves their self-interest as well as their customers and employees. Without change, the prescription risks being far more painful." "Free enterprise capitalism has shown a remarkable capacity to reinvent itself. At times, as the historian and politician Thomas Babington Macaulay wisely noted, it is necessary to reform in order to preserve. Today, the worlds has reached that moment. It is time for a reset." (Financial Times, September 16, 1919).
In the UN SDGs case, largely forgotten at least in the UN SDG documents are people, especially popular dissatisfaction about quality of life as manifested in their daily life. We focus on East Asia where our expertise lies in terms of the availability of a number of polls of quality of life such as those led by Takashi Inoguchi, Noriko Iwai, and Ryozo Yoshino.
The second is the extension of quality of life studies on a global scale. The book, coauthored with Lien T.Q. Le and entitled:
Takashi Inoguchi and Lien T.Q. Le, The Development of Global Legislative Politics: Rousseau and Locke Writ Global, Springer, forthcoming in November 2019.
What has driven the earth on which a liberal world order has been flourished since World War II? We contend that it is the growth of multilateral treaties. If Jean-Jacques Rousseau's and John Locke's social contract ideas are writ global under digitalized globalization, global quality of life can be gauged surrounding a bunch of global quasi-social contracts, i.e., 511 multilateral treaties, as of 2019. On the basis of them the liberal world order has struggled, survived and thrived until recently because they are 'transformative' in the sense that joining them encourages both domestic and global improvements of quality of life among joiners on a global scale. At home sovereign states must see to it that the direction and distribution of citizens' preferences whether it is about parental authority, or about intellectual property rights, or about nuclear ban. If domestic laws contradict with clauses of a proposed treaty, one may start to work toward revising the concerned domestic law or leave it unrevised and opt for not joining the concerned multilateral treaty. At the same time one has another front. Beyond your society, one may watch international environments concerning the concerned multilateral treaty. If you feel strong affinity about culture, identity, religion, history and geography with a certain group of states, you may be inclined to tilt your treaty decision about a concerned treaty to a certain group of states. If you feel that a concerned treaty falls in the policy domain, say, health and labor, in which your society may not be confident to sustain the WHO's international standards immediately soon, you may a s well opt for joining but with some reservations attached as to compliance with the WHO's multilateral treaties. The point here is that multilateral treaties are intrinsically tied with both domestic and external engagements whereby your sovereign state must juggle, jostle and struggle to secure your own interests and priorities and at the same time it must see to it that your external environments may not be triggered to be metamorphosed by your disharmonious unilateral moves and that your inattention to the "red lines" of those states that stand hegemonic to your country as far as alliance and defense policy. Here important to note is that our scheme does neither presume the salutation of the Westphalian model where a sovereign state stands as if to say that I stand higher than thou nor the acceptance of the extreme model of globalization whereby liberalism sweeps every intermediate organizations out beneath a pure global market. Implicit trust matters in the whole process of joining and together implementing a bundle of global quasi-social contracts.
For the next few years I now envisage a little optimistically to write two books. One is:
Takashi Inoguchi, Eight Types of Asian Societies: Bottom Up and Evidence-Based (in preparation).
and the other is:
Takashi Inoguchi and Lien T.Q. Le, The Birth and Development of Global Legislative Politics: East Asia in Focus (provisional title)
With the proofing processes of the two forthcoming books being about to end, as of September 2019, I thought that I might as well share a reflective and prospective piece for the better communications with ISQOLS community.
Click to learn more about Takashi Inoguchi.
The Handbook of Quality of Life in African Societies published in the International handbooks of Quality of Life Series is being written about on the United Nations Academic Impact website!
Congratulations to the editor, Irma Erloff, and the editor for the series, Graciela Tonon!
The Fall 2019 Social Indicators Network News (SINET), the official newsletter for ISQOLS, is available now to read now. Click on the link below to read:
Advancing the Research on Resiliency: Fostering Resilient Outcomes for Youth
Children and adolescents today are increasingly faced with adversity, including poverty, chronic exposure to violence, and traumatic life events. The ability to thrive despite these significant stressors—or being “resilient”—has been a focus of interdisciplinary research spanning the past several decades. Resiliency theory focuses on the “protective processes” both within the individual and their environmental circumstances.1 Despite the complexity of these processes, research suggests that resilience can be learned and schools can play an essential role in the development of resilient skills among youth.2
Much of the research to date has focused on contextual factors such as parent and school relationships. Comparatively fewer studies have focused on specific internal attributes or processes that enable youth to thrive even in the face of adversity. Further, most of the research is correlational. There is a need to understand the efficacy of evidence-based interventions to promote resiliency in youth.
School Psychology invites authors to submit empirical studies evaluating universal or targeted school-based interventions aimed at promoting resiliency or teaching resilient skills among school-aged youth. We are especially interested in studies that utilize rigorous research designs to empirically evaluate short- and long-term outcomes. Studies that address the sustainability of these intervention in school settings and the role of the school psychologist in their delivery are especially encouraged.
The deadline for initial submission is October 15th, 2019. Any questions related to this special section can be addressed to Stephanie Fredrick (firstname.lastname@example.org).
1Luthar, S. S., Cicchetti, D., & Becker, B. (2000). The construct of resilience: A critical evaluation and guidelines for future work. Child Development, 71, 543-562.
2Forbes, S. & Fikretoglu, D. (2018). Building resilience: The conceptual basis and research evidence for resilience training programs. Review of General Psychology, 22, 452-468.
Call for Papers Advancing the Research on Resiliency.docx
Organized by The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (STATEC) and the Ministry of the Economy, Luxembourg
Endorsed by the International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies (ISQOLS; isqols.org)
This international conference will bring together leading scholars to discuss the quest for better lives. Economists traditionally advocated economic growth as the foremost policy goal, but now even economists often challenge this view. The discussion remains open, indeed flourishes, with more contributors than ever. How do we promote well-being? What are the best policies? What is the role for civil society?
The conference will take place over three and a half days from 18 – 21 of March 2020. We have scheduled one keynote speaker for each day and a roundtable discussing how policy-makers can integrate the findings from well-being studies.
This is an interdisciplinary conference welcoming contributions from every field of social sciences, such as: economics, sociology, psychology, and political sciences. We especially welcome papers on the following topics:
· Correlates and consequences of well-being and ill-being (e.g. personality, wealth, productivity, immigration, occupation, health);
· Well-being over time;
· Well-being inequality;
· Inequality, social capital, and inclusive growth;
· Well-being and the changing environment;
· Public or private interventions for well-being and their evaluations;
· Future directions in well-being research.
· Well-being and ill-being metrics (e.g. single indicators vs. dashboards; micro vs. macro);
On Friday morning the conference will host a round table on “Policy meets research” where representatives of institutions will discuss advantages, disadvantages and limitations of the well-being approach in policy making.
The deadline for application is the 15 October 2019. We will notify the authors of accepted papers by mid-December 2019.
For more information, please, visit our conference web-site (www.wellbeing2020.lu) or send an e-mail to: infoSWB2020@statec.etat.lu
We look forward to welcoming you in Luxembourg,
The scientific committee:
Serge Allegrezza, STATEC
Martijn Burger, Erasmus University of Rotterdam
Conchita d’Ambrosio, University of Luxembourg
Johannes Hirata, Osnabruck University
Kelsey O’Connor, STATEC
Chiara Peroni, STATEC
Maurizio Pugno, University of Cassino
Francesco Sarracino, STATEC
visit our website (https://www.wellbeing2020.lu/) or feel free to contact us (submitSWB2020@statec.etat.lu).
The deadline for submissions is the 15th of October 2019.
ISQOLS educational grant
I am Shoirakhon Nurdinova, an educational grant recipient. I am grateful that I have received an educational grant which made enable me to trip to the International Society for Quality of Life Studies conference. I attended at ISQOLS Conference in Granada, Spain with my presentation entitled “Are Turkish Housewives Happy?: A Qualitative Approach”. My presentation focused on happiness of Turkish housewives, whom I conducted semi-structured interviews. The interviews with 60 housewives from different regions of Turkey explores factors affecting women’s decisions to/to not participate in labour market, and their happiness level. The presentation allowed me to introduce my research findings to ISQOLS members and conference participants and expand my academic network.
I enjoyed to other participants’ presentations, in particular on wellbeing/happiness of working/non-working women. Carina Keldenich’s presentation “Happy Homemakers or Desperate Housewives? Work, Parenthood and Women’s Affective Well-Being” was quite close to my topic.
ISQOLS conference was very important for networking on my research and future career. Networking is beneficial for me in sharing information, getting in touch with experts in terms of scientific collaborations and developing research ideas. Furthermore, networks influence me positively to improve new skills and to make scientific achievements in my future entire academic career. Feedbacks of experts improved my future scientific approaches. Also, ISQOLS conference was good opportunity to stay up to date with current best practices and cutting edge methodologies in the field.
Another beneficial part of the event was ISQOLS mentor mixer program, which provide young ISQOLS members with experienced mentors. I am lucky that I met my mentor Prof. Ming-Chang Tsai. We discussed about my future career goals, research interests, publishing opportunities etc. during mentor mixer program. Also, we discussed about my future research on happiness in Central Asia, which is quite new research area in Central Asia. I believe that mentorship program would be helpful me to develop more effective tools and methodologies on happiness economics, quality-of-life-studies in Central Asian Countries.
ISQOLS conference gave me motivation and a new perspective on my work and research.
Yours faithfully, Shoirakhon Nurdinova
17th ISQOLS Annual Conference in Granada, Spain, 4-7 September 2019
by Natalia Kopylova
University of Johannesburg, South Africa,
24 September 2019
I attended the ISQOLS conference that took place in beautiful Granada. It was my first international conference and I will remember it for the rest of my life.
I was given the opportunity to not only present the topic “Subjective wellbeing in countries in transition: Russia and South Africa” but also be the chair of the session “Well-being around the world” which took place on the 5th of September (the second day of the conference). It was a nerve-wracking moment, considering that I’ve never presented internationally. In my opinion, the session was received successfully by academic researchers and experts that attended parallel session that morning.
During the conference, I was able to attend numerous sessions and workshops that directly relate to my research interests. The speakers provided valuable information that will help me going further. For example, the keynote lectures by Stefano Bartollini and Michael Marmot were inspiring and thought provoking. The first one focused on money, social relationships and people’s happiness. Whereas the second speaker concentrated on health inequalities and social determinants of health. On the first day of the conference (4th of September) I took part in the pre-conference workshop by Lara Fleischer “The future of OECD well-being measures”. It was an interactive session where all attendants participated in the discussion of the proposed headline indicators set. The dashboard of the indicators will assist me further when conducting one of my PhD topics. On the third day (6th of September) I was present at the morning parallel session on “Quality of life among the elderly”. Presenters investigated the elderly’s well-being, their activities and proposed methods that could be used in order to improve their lives. The afternoon session of “Happiness and technology” showed a different perspective on the measurement of the levels of happiness among the people.
Being in the first year of my PhD, this conference gave me great exposure to a plethora of new content and opened the door to many opportunities. I was fortunate enough to meet international academics whose work I have read and cited which was the highlight of my trip. There was always a chance to interact and exchange views during the conference sessions and coffee breaks. This conference was an eye-opening experience that gave me more knowledge and confidence for the future.
I would like to thank the ISQOLS for giving me the Educational Grant. A special thank you to my supervisor, Prof. Talita Greyling, who introduced me to this field and provided such generous support and guidance. It was a great pleasure to be a participant in such a momentous event.
Dalia Research is launching the first-ever daily global happiness monitor: everyday we ask thousands of people in over 50 countries around the world how happy they are, generating the world’s largest continuous dataset on global happiness. Our goal is to help organizations, researchers and governments better understand the well-being of countries around the world in real-time, as events ranging from elections, sports, financial crashes, extreme weather, conflicts and new technologies send ripple effects around the globe. In doing so, we hope to prioritize happiness as the guiding indicator for national well-being and policy-making.
Call to action for researchers:
Dalia Research has the technology to run this global survey, but we need advice from the happiness science community. Our currently methodology is a first attempt - we are still flexible and ready to take advice from the research community to change the design to make it as useful as possible. Please keep in mind that the final data will be open source, and free to researchers and the public in general, so your help will translate into a better dataset and more value for everyone interested in happiness measurements.
Specifically, we are looking to answer the following questions:
1) In what ways is tracking happiness levels around the world on a daily basis valuable for the research community? What could it be used for?
2) Imagine you could build a happiness tracker. What survey question would you use to measure happiness? Would you include any other additional variables, or is external data on political events enough?
Please send your responses to:
About us: Dalia Research is a Berlin-based public opinion company that distributes surveys to millions of people around the world through apps/websites on their internet devices.
Methodology: The current methodology for the Global Happiness Monitor (it may be subject to change depending on the feedback we get) is the following:
We ask a nationally representative sample of 200 respondents in each country everyday.
The survey question is borrowed from Gallup: Did you experience any of the following emotions a lot yesterday? (Anger, Happiness, Sadness, Stress, Worry, Physical Pain, Enjoyment, None of the above)
Well-Being 2020: Knowledge for Informed Decisions
The Well-Being 2020 Conference: Knowledge for Informed Decisions will be hosted in Luxembourg from the 18th to the 21st of March 2020. The organizers are the National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (STATEC) and the Ministry of Economy of Luxembourg. The conference offers excellent key note speakers, a policy roundtable, a beautiful location, and a great opportunity to exchange and discuss research on well-being.
This is an interdisciplinary conference welcoming contributions from every field of social sciences, such as: economics, sociology, psychology, and political sciences. We especially welcome papers on the following topics:
- Correlates and consequences of well-being and ill-being (e.g. personality, wealth, productivity, immigration, occupation, health);
- Well-being over time;
- Well-being inequality;
- Inequality, social capital, and inclusive growth;
- Well-being and the changing environment;
- Public or private interventions for well-being and their evaluations;
- Future directions in well-being research;
- Well-being and ill-being metrics (e.g. single indicators vs. dashboards; micro vs. macro).
Our four keynote speakers are: prof. Carol Graham, University of Maryland & Brookings Institution; prof. Andrew Oswald, University of Warwick; prof. Stefano Bartolini, University of Siena; and Mr. John De Graaf, an American author, journalist and filmmaker.
For more details, please visit our website (https://www.wellbeing2020.lu/) or feel free to contact us (submitSWB2020@statec.etat.lu).
Leire Iriarte (of Buen Vivir) is conducting a study in collaboration with Laura Musikanski (Happiness Alliance) about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the metrics of well-being and happiness.
At the beginning of this year we published a study analyzing the interactions between ODS and happiness metrics. This is the work I presented at the ISQOLS webinar. Following that work, we have designed a survey to gather the opinion of different actors with an interest in the subject. You can answer the Spanish or English version of this survey, which takes less than 10 minutes to complete, through any of the following links:
- Survey in Spanish: https://forms.gle/PLGHRTfSLUjHa9v97
- Survey in English: https://forms.gle/2LVj3BasRHjpehe68
The survey will be open until 14 August and the results of the study will be presented and discussed in an online workshop on 27 August (9 a.m. CET in Spanish; 5 p.m. CET in English).
I would be very grateful if you could answer the survey as well as distribute it among ISQOLS members since I am sure that there are many people interested in the subject who can make great contributions.
The results will be open for everyone interested in them. Our plan is:
- Present the results of the survey in an online workshop the 27th of August.
- Present the results of the survey and workshop in Granada (I have an oral presentation on Saturday).
- Submit the results to the open source journal: International Journal of Community Well-being (hopefully in fall).
Thank you very much for your time and wish you happy summer time!
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