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  • 27 Feb 2019 11:14 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    The RC55, the Research Committee  on Social Indicators of the International Sociological Association, is organizing its next mid-term conference on “Comparative Perspectives on Social Indicators” in the context of 13th Spanish Congress of Sociology (Valencia, Spain, 3–6 July 2019). 

    In the context of 13th Spanish Congress of Sociology (Valencia, Spain, 3–6 July 2019)

    RC55 Research Committee on Social Indicators

    invitation to participate in the 2019 Mid-term Conference

    “Comparative Perspectives on Social Indicators”

    Call for abstracts

    Grupo de Trabajo 43 (Work Group 43) ISA Research Committee 55: Social Indicators

    From 3 to 6 July 2019 the 13th Spanish Sociology Conference, with the theme: Societies at the crossroads, the commitments of sociology, will be held in Valencia, Spain. The Spanish Federation of Sociology will organise the conference with the assistance of the Universidad de Valencia and the Asociación Valenciana de Sociología.

    The RC55 Research Committee on Social Indicators of the International Sociological Association is pleased to invite authors to submit abstracts for oral presentations that address comparative research in the study of social reality, focusing on the construction and use of social indicators in comparative research among countries (including comparisons among regions or cities). Contributions can be of theoretical nature, applied studies or methodological reflections (either in a quantitative, qualitative or mixed perspective), but with a clear comparative focus (i.e. measurement and study of same phenomena in different countries). Thematically, contributions to all social indicators domains are welcome, like, for instance, social inequality, consumption, wellbeing, etc.

    We expect to received contributions in some of these topics:

    • Construction and use of social indicators in comparative research among countries: theoretical approach.
    • Construction and use of social indicators in comparative research among countries: methodological reflections.
    • Construction and use of social indicators in comparative research among countries: empirical evidence in quantitative approach.
    • Construction and use of social indicators in comparative research among countries: empirical evidence in qualitative approach.
    • Construction and use of social indicators in comparative research among countries: empirical evidence in mix-methods approach.

    A publishing opportunity for participants at Special Issue on Social Indicators Research A selection of contribution will be invited after the conference to submit a full version (on September) of their contribution for possible publication in a forthcoming Special Issue of Social Indicators Research Journal.

    Abstract submissions Deadline: December 31th, 2018. Extended to March 15th, 2019 for GT 43 group - ISA RC 55 group- Confirmation of acceptance: April 11th, 2019

    Length of abstracts: maximum of 250 words.

    Registration: Opening: 08 March 2019 Early registration period: 26 April 2019 All accepted abstracts will be included in the conference proceedings if the registration fee was paid up to 07 May 2019. Conference proceedings publication: 22 May 2019

    Coordinator Task Group: Sandra Fachelli (Pablo de Olavide University - University Autonomous of Barcelona)

    Task Group Members: Christian Suter (Université de Neuchâtel), Joonmo Son (National University of Singapore), Jeroen Boelhouwer (The Netherlands Institute for Social Research), Enrico Di Bella (University of Genoa), Pedro Lopez-Roldán (University Autonomous of Barcelona) and Eduardo Bericat (Universidad de Sevilla).

    Send abstract to:

    Follow this recommendation: Subject: GT 43 ISA Research Committee 55: Social Indicators Body of message: Title of Proposal: Contribution Topic: Abstract: Name and Surname Author 1. Filiation Author 1. Author e-mail. Name and Surname Author 2. Filiation Author 2. Author e-mail. Name and Surname Author 3. Filiation Author 3. Author e-mail. Identify author of contact.

    Practical information • Conference website • GT43 ISA Research Committee 55: Social Indicators: • Accommodation coming soon in:

    FES_GT43 General Call.pdf

  • 27 Feb 2019 10:58 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    Recruitment of Four Researchers in Psychology

    Opening of the recruitment process of four researchers in the field of Psychology, to collaborate in an "Experimental Study on the Impact of Singing Groups on the Well-being, Cognitive Function and Health of Older Adults."

    Intervention research project with the Scientific Supervision of the Universidade Autónoma de Lisboa (Doctor Iolanda Costa Galinha) and ISCTE-IUL (Doctor Maria Luísa Lima), in partnership with the Teatro Nacional de São Carlos and the Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Almada and the Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa, funded by the “Orçamento Participativo Portugal” (2017) and promoted and coordinated by the DGArtes.

    Objective: Collaboration in the writing of one scientific paper and one scientific poster.

    Work location: at distance (by means of two reports per month, supervised by the scientific coordination of the project).

    Remuneration: € 4500 gross payment in four branches at the conclusion of the: (1) introduction (including state of the art) and method; (2) results; and (3) discussion sections of the paper; and (4) the scientific poster.

    Duration: 12 months, starting 1st May 2019.

    Recruitment Requirements:

    (1) Master or PhD in Psychology or Social Sciences;

    (2) good command (written and spoken) of the English language;

    (3) advanced statistical knowledge, with experience in both SPSS and AMOS.

    Preference for researchers with scientific experience:

    (1) in topics related to aging;

    (2) in experimental research methods.

    Response to the announcement with the following documents, in one PDF file:

    1. Synopsis of the Curriculum Vitae, highlighting:

                   (a) Academic qualifications, year and classifications (including certificates);

                   (b) List of the main scientific publications (up to 6 publications);

                   (c) Orcid Identifier;

                   (e) Research Fellowships;

                   (f) Collaborations in funded research projects.

    2. Signed Complete Curriculum Vitae;

    3. Letter in which the candidate, after analyzing the attached project (Annex 1) and based on the data collected in the study, proposes and frames in the literature a research question that will develop in an article (maximum 500 words, in English).

    The selection process involves a first phase of documental analysis (90%) and a second phase of interview (10%).

    Responses to the announcement until March 15

    to: and

    Annex 1: Abstract of the Project “Experimental Study of the Effects of Group Singing in the Well-Being, Cognitive Function, and Health of Older Adults.”

    Background: Singing is a multimodal activity that requires physical, cognitive and psychosocial performance. It has the potential to improve the health of older adults in various dimensions and to promote active aging and independence. Previous studies suggest that singing is beneficial to the well-being of older adults, but the specific factors responsible for these benefits remain uncertain, as most of the studies do not analyze causal inferences. The present study responds to the need for further experimental studies with control group and follow-up measurement for the analysis of the causal effects of group singing on well-being, cognitive function and health in old age, with a higher validity of the research results.

    Design: In this study, we implement and examine the effects of a singing group for older adults using an experimental and a control group. Observations will take place in both groups before and after the intervention and at a follow-up, 4 months after the intervention. Participants will be 130 retired elderly (> 60 years) from the several facilities of the Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa and the Santa Casa da Misericordia de Almada, randomly assigned to an experimental group (n = 65) and a control group (n = 65). The intervention program consists of a singing group activity with five components: (1) physical and relaxation exercises for singing, (vocal warming, diaphragmatic breading and body posture); (3) rehearsal of repertoire (memory and interpretation of music and lyrics); (4) socialization, 20 minutes brake for socializing, group dynamics exercises and activities with common goals; (5) creation and presentation of a musical show to the public. The program will be developed in 34 sessions of two hours each, two times a week for four months, including the preparation and the presentation of a musical show. Measures. The study proposes to measure the following variables:(1) Psychoemotional indicators: Subjective Well-Being (Global Happiness, Satisfaction with Life, and Positive and Negative Emotions); Quality of Life (Satisfaction with Physical Health, Psychological Health, Social Relations, Sensory Function, Autonomy, Social Participation, Mobility, Personal Care, Usual Activities, Pain); Self-esteem; Depression, Anxiety and Stress;(2) Psychosocial indicators: Social Well-Being; loneliness; social identification and identification with the singing group;(3) Cognitive Functioning: Executive Function, Attention, Verbal Memory and Verbal Fluency;(4) General Health: Biomarkers of blood glucose, cholesterol, sedimentation rate, C-reactive protein, blood pressure, and body weight, respiratory function, aerobic and balance functions, health satisfaction, health services attendance, and medication intake;(5) Sociodemographic variables: age, sex, marital status, educational status, living arrangement, age of retirement, occupation before retirement, and socioeconomic status;(6) Semi-structured interviews about the motivations, expectations and perceived benefits of participating in the program, positive and negative aspects of the program and suggestions for future programs. Validated short-versions of the measures will be preferred, collected before and after the intervention and at a follow-up, 4 months after the intervention.Procedures: The project strictly follows the international criteria of ethical requirements for studies with human participants and for the protection of personal and sensitive data in European directives and it has been approved by an independent Ethics Committee.Discussion: Positive effects of the intervention program are expected on the well-being, cognitive function and general health of the participants. In doing so, our study will empirically validate a cost-effective intervention program in group singing for older adults.

  • 7 Feb 2019 6:25 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    Call for Book Proposals

    Community Quality of Life and Well-Being

    Aims and Scope of the Series

    Series Editor: Rhonda Phillips, Purdue University, US

    Editorial Board: Meg Holden, Simon Fraser University, Canada; Charlotte Khan, The Boston Foundation, US; Youngwha Kee, Soongsil University, Korea; Alex Michalos, University of Northern British Columbia, Canada; Don Rahtz, College of William and Mary, US; Joseph Sirgy, Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, US; Ben Warner, Jacksonville Community Council, Inc., US

    Community Quality of Life and Well-being is a book series comprised of volumes related to local and regional level research, providing current and leading edge information to planners, policy makers, and quality of life researchers involved in community and regional well-being research and application. Formerly entitled Community Quality-of-Life Indicators: Best Practices, the series reflects the broad scope of well-being. In addition to best practices of community quality-of-life indicators projects the series welcomes a variety of research and practice topics as related to overall community well-being and quality of life dimensions, relating to policy, application, research, and/or practice. Research on issues such as societal happiness, quality of life domains in the policy construct, measuring and gauging progress, dimensions of urban and regional planning and community development, and related topics are anticipated.

    This series is published by Springer in partnership with the International Society for Quality-of-Life Studies (ISQOLS), a global society with the purpose of promoting and encouraging research and collaboration in quality of life and well-being theory and applications. More information about ISQOLS can be found at
    The Editor welcomes proposals for both edited volumes and authored monographs contributions on topics such as:

    • · Quality of Life in Communities
      · Societal Happiness
      · Social Health and Well-Being
      · Life Satisfaction in various life domains
      · Well-Being Theories and Applications
      · Quality of Life for Policy Development
    • · Measuring and Gauging Quality of Life
      · Dimensions of Planning  and Community Development
      · Indicators of Well-Being
      · Overall Community Well-Being

    Please direct your inquiries or send your proposal to: Rhonda Phillips,

    For more information about the series:

  • 7 Feb 2019 5:46 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)


    Since its foundation in 1614, the University of Groningen has enjoyed an international reputation as a dynamic and innovative center of higher education offering high-quality teaching and research. Belonging to the best research universities of Europe and joining forces with prestigious partner universities and networks, the University of Groningen is truly an international place of knowledge.

    Faculty of Economics and Business
    The Faculty of Economics and Business offers an inspiring study and working environment for students and employees. International accreditation enables the Faculty to assess performance against the highest international standards. It also creates an exciting environment of continuous improvement. FEB's programmes, academic staff and research do well on various excellence ranking lists.

    Scholarship opportunities

    The PhD position will involve working on applied economics projects at the intersection of development, well-being, and labor economics. The successful candidate is expected to develop her/his own research agenda under the guidance of the PhD supervisors. Possible topics include, but are not limited to:

    • the well-being consequences of rising living standards in developing countries
    • changes in the incomes and health of migrants and the family members they leave behind
    • the well-being implications of reforms of labor market and other institutions.

    The successful candidate is expected to play an active role in designing the PhD project, conducting literature reviews and developing theoretical arguments, analyzing data, writing scientific papers, and presenting research findings at scientific conferences and research seminars.

    The project will be part of SOM’s research programme in Global Economics and Management.


    We are looking for a candidate with:

    • a MSc degree in economics, or an equivalent degree
    • knowledge of development or labor economics
    • very good methodological and quantitative skills
    • a good command of statistical software such as Stata, R, SPSS, or SAS
    • excellent English language skills
    • good communication skills
    • a high motivation to work in an international environment
    • an ability to work in a team but also independently

    Prior research experience is a plus.


    The PhD Scholarship student will be enrolled in the PhD Scholarship Programme and receives a scholarship of €2,120 per month (gross) from the University of Groningen under the condition of a positive assessment at the end of the first year. The monthly allowance is comparable to the first-year salary of PhD candidates with an appointment. For more information on the RUG PhD scholarship programme and its benefits please check the website at

    An assessment may be part of the procedure, consisting of psychological tests and an interview.
    Starting date: Preferably September 1, 2019


    If you are interested, you may apply for this position until 3 March 23.59h / before 4 March 2019, Dutch local time. Please click on the "Apply" button below. The application package consists of the following separate documents:
    1. your cv and scan of your passport
    2. a motivation letter (1A4 max) and a short study proposal for the PhD project (2 A4 max).
    3. a scan of your diploma including transcripts
    4. proof of English proficiency
    5. other relevant documents

    The documents 1-4 are compulsory and please note that incomplete application packages will not be taken into account.

    Unsolicited marketing is not appreciated.


    For information you can contact:

  • 30 Jan 2019 7:55 AM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    Congratulations to ISQOLS Members,  Leonie Steckermeier and Jan Delhey!

    A recent study by Leonie Steckermeier and Jan Delhey (both ISQOLS members) from University Magdeburg is listed among the  "Top 10 insights from the science of a meaningful life". This list is compiled by Greater Good, a
    team of well-being researchers affiliated with Berkeley University. Each year they pick "the most provocative and influential findings".

    The study featured is titled "Better for Everyone? Egalitarian Culture and Social Wellbeing in Europe", published in Social Indicators Research (2018, online first - open access).

    To quote from the webpage:
    "One recent study suggests another possibility: that when people live in more generally egalitarian cultures—marked by greater social trust and self-expression values—they are less likely to feel inferior to others, and so are happier as a result."

    Click the link below to read the entire article, or read the excerpt below:

    "Living in a country that promotes gender equality may seem like a good idea for many reasons. But does it really affect people’s well-being? A new study published in the Journal of Happiness Studies put that question to the test.

    Drawing from the World Values Survey—a large data pool tracking well-being around the world—researchers looked at how happy people were in Western Europe, the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan. This they compared to specific measures of gender equality in each country, like educational attainment, gender balance in parliament, earned income, life expectancies, and more.

    Ultimately, they found that people living in more egalitarian countries had greater overall well-being. This was true even taking into account people’s wealth and income, as well as whether a country was more “individualistic” or “collectivist,” among other factors. Additionally, when looking at changes within a country (rather than comparing countries), increases in gender equality during one year corresponded to greater overall well-being that year.

    “The magnitude of the effect of inequality is quite pronounced, meaning that changes in the level of inequality are associated with substantively meaningful changes in the level of well-being,” the authors write.

    While these effects were more pronounced for women, men were also better off in more egalitarian countries. Why? Perhaps egalitarianism allows men more emotional freedom, reducing their perceived need to conform to masculine ideals (which is tied to unhappiness); or happier women mean happier men (because of contagion effects). Or it could be that equity helps the economy overall, and that in turn influences everyone’s well-being.

    One recent study suggests another possibility: that when people live in more generally egalitarian cultures—marked by greater social trust and self-expression values—they are less likely to feel inferior to others, and so are happier as a result.

    Whatever the reason, the researchers conclude, “To the extent that governments wish to promote the happiness and well-being of their citizens, it may be sensible to prioritize equality.”

  • 27 Jan 2019 5:15 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    ISQOLS Job Announcement: Coordinating Editor, Social Indicator Network News (SINET).

    The Coordinating Editor works and organizes the contents of each of three issues of SINET per year (February, May-August, November).  This includes recruiting a member of ISQOLS or non-member scholars or practitioners to write a Review Essay on a social indicators/quality-of-life research topic and then working with the Executive Director of ISQOLS (Jill Johnson) to include other items per issue, including a letter from the ISQOLS, other announcements, etc.  The ISQOLS Office then composes the contents each issue, arranges for reproduction, printing, and mailing.

    The editorship is of a three-year term.

    The candidate must be a current ISQOLS member and have demonstrated editing experience. 

    The ISQOLS offers a yearly honorarium of US$800 for editorial service.

    Applicants must send an letter of interest to by Feb 10, 2019.

    Questions? Please email:

    Thank you for your enthusiastic support.

    Please click here to learn more about SINET.

  • 29 Dec 2018 2:45 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    It has been a privilege to serve ISQOLS as its President

    Letter from Mariano Rojas (ISQOLS President 2017-2018)

    I have been a member of ISQOLS since 2000, and my academic career has substantially benefi ted from participating in its conferences and in related activities. My life has been enriched by interacting with so many warm, enthusiastic, and learned scholars from so many countries and disciplines. It has been a privilege to serve ISQOLS as its President during the years 2017 and 2018. I am grateful to all members of ISQOLS for giving me the opportunity to serve; it has been two wonderful years which allowed me to contribute to ISQOLS. ISQOLS gives great opportunities to all scholars – young and old – to keep growing up as researchers and I am planning to be fully involved in the Society in the future. ISQOLS is an international and multidisciplinary society that relies on scientifi c knowledge to contribute to people’s well-being around the world. I do strongly believe that ISQOLS has a noble and very relevant mission and that its best years are ahead. ISQOLS is an international society that puts into contact researchers from all parts of the world. Coming from Latin America, I do feel very strong about this international scope of ISQOLS. Bringing together researchers with diff erent life trajectories and cultural backgrounds is very important for the study of quality of life, well-being and happiness. The multicultural background of ISQOLS is important for a better understanding of people’s well-being by recognizing the relevance of values, beliefs, and traditions. It also shows that it is possible to interact in a globalized world with respect, appreciation, and understanding of diversity. ISQOLS is a society that favors evidencebased knowledge. The desire for a world where people’s well-being is high is not new; this desire has been common in political discourses for centuries. In fact, the desire for a better world has inspired many utopias; unfortunately, many of them have usually ended up as dystopias. ISQOLS gathers a large group of scholars who rely on scientifi c research –rather than on doctrines and ideologies- to address issues regarding people’s experience of being well. Databases, qualitative and quantitative techniques, methodologies and approaches, hypotheses and corroborations, and respectful discussions are necessary in order to provide sound knowledge to guide personal decisions and private and public policy in the pursue of well-being.

    ISQOLS gathers scholars from many disciplines. It seems that the current compartmentalization of knowledge is very limited to fully understand the experience of being well that concrete human beings –of fl esh and blood- have. Hence, disciplinary-based academic societies are not well-positioned to make substantial contributions to people’s well-being; ISQOLS provides the space for multi, inter and even transdisciplinary research. ISQOLS is also fi nancially sound; thanks in great part to the excellent work of the Development Committee and the philanthropic will of many endowed-track honorees. Revenues have also exceeded our expenditures during the past years, and we have been able of generating some surplus which could be used to fi nance special programs: in fact, we are using some of this money to support the PhD-dissertation-awards program and to offer conference-participation grants to young scholars. I believe it is important for ISQOLS to invest in people, in particular in young and enthusiastic people who may come to ISQOLS who may fi nd in the Society the appropriate place to enrich their academic life and who in the near future could take the leadership and make ISQOLS stronger. Professor Ming-Chang Tsai will become our President in January 2019; I have had the honor of knowing him for many years and I wish him all the best. During the next weeks we will be involved in the election of the Board of Directors and the President Elect 2019-2020. The Nomination Committee has already started this task. Four ISQOLS conferences are already in the horizon: Granada, Spain in September 2019; Rotterdam, The Netherlands in 2020; Vermont, The United States in 2021; and Sabah, Malaysia in 2022. If I may have a seasons’ wish it is for ISQOLS to keep the sense of community that shows that people from diff erent disciplines and from many corners of the world can come together with the single purpose of contributing to the well-being of people. I would like to express my gratitude to all the members of the Executive Committee and of the Board of Directors as well as to the Executive Director for their support during the past two years. They made my job easier and they contributed to make ISQOLS stronger. Thanks . . . many thanks.

    ISQOLS President’s Message

    Mariano Rojas

  • 29 Nov 2018 12:30 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    The Quality of Life and Policy Issues among the Middle East and North African Countries

    el-Sayed el-Aswad

    Publisher: Springer; 1st ed. 2019 (September 21, 2018)

    This book addresses the challenges threatening the quality of life (QOL) and well-being of people living in the MENA region. It focuses on both internal / local and external / global drivers impacting their well-being particularly in the domains of economy, health, and education. Additionally, it presents a critical analysis to help readers understand the position that the MENA countries currently occupy in the world. Lastly, it provides policy analysts and decision makers with otherwise hard to obtain data and information related to socio-economic, cultural, demographic, technological, and political factors that have influenced the quality of life there.

    The book, first of the Springer book series of Human Well-Being Research and Policy Making, is a timely work in that it addresses quality of life in the 21 nations of the Middle East and North Africa Region by focusing on multiple policy dimensions of well-being. Furthermore, this monograph seeks to delineate cross-cultural similarities and differences by extensively and comparatively focusing on six of the region’s most diverse countries six countries (Egypt, Iran, Israel, Tunisia, Turkey, and the UAE), selected specifically to highlight the diversity in QOL found in the region.  

    In brief, this book:

    • ·      Presents a critical review of the scope of policy issues in the MENA countries
    • ·      Examines the systems of social and public policies implemented in these countries
    • ·      Analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of social policy with regard to improving the quality of life and well-being of people in the MENA region

  • 28 Nov 2018 1:23 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    Due to health-related problems, Liz Eckermann, ISOQLS's President Elect for 2019-2020, took the decision of withdrawing from the position. We hope for her complete and prompt recovery. In order to fill the President Elect position, ISQOLS's President (2017-18), Mariano Rojas, in coordination with ISQOLS's Board of Directors, called for an extra-ordinary election and asked the Nomination Committee to start the process of nomination candidate(s) for the President Elect position. 

    The Nominating Committee (Graciela Tonon, Habib Tiliouine, Joe Sirgy, Daniel Shek, Kai Ludwigs) nominated Ming-Chang Tsai as a candidate for the ISQOLS President Elect in replacement of Liz Eckermann. 

    The President-Elect is the position of the person elected by the general membership to assume the presidency after the completion of the term of the current president.  The general membership officially voted with majority approval for Ming-Chang Tsai. 


    Letter to the ISQOLS Community from Ming-Chang Tsai

    Dear ISQOLS members,

    It is a great honor, and a privilege as well, to serve the Society as President for the coming two years (2019 and 2020). The main ideal interest of our society is to study the well-being and quality of life across the globe from a multi-disciplinary approach. In the past decades, we have firmly established a strong academic community benefiting from our numerous members, whose enthusiasm, efforts, engagement in exploring how human societies can advance in happiness and providing policy suggestions to achieve that desirable goal. The relay goes on. We are gathering here to contribute our research inputs. We surely know it helps make the world a better and happier planet. And this job cannot be done if we do not provide evidence-based suggestions from our scientific research.

    We still have missions ahead. First, we need to mobilize a new generation of researchers to work with us. Young cohorts indicate fresh ideas, high dynamics, and of course, new friends. Any organization will not make progress without new members joining in. It is not just about the increase of size, but what matters is to keep the momentum at a high level. I hope we all assist the Society to grow this way.

    Second, we also can strength our Society as a venue of sharing new ideas for academics. Our annual meetings have been very successful in gathering interested scholars. Less paid attention are our webinars. In the digital era, we have to take advantage of communicating online. Our community surely benefits from more of this sort of exchange activities. I believe it also is a good way to talk to colleagues and maintain connected when being present is not possible. We need to mobilize more volunteers to share their ideas online.

    Third, our society can advance when we provide services and advices to practioners. We have a long tradition in offering policy opinions for people working on community well-being. In addition to certificate programs, we also need to develop other modules that help realize better quality of life in community, city and even larger regions. Moreover, we encourage our members to design social indicators for specific fields, be it for urbanites, children, women, or the poor. We should actively offer social reporting to see where we stand now and where to go in next phases.


    I wish to work with all of you to accomplish these important tasks. Your involvement and contribution make the Society a truly worthy union. We will feel very proud of ourselves because we work and study together to contribute to make a better and happier future.     


    Ming-Chang Tsai

  • 27 Nov 2018 8:13 PM | Jill Johnson (Administrator)

    Launching the Estes Weighted Index of Social Progress on MIQOLS website

    (Estes WISP;

    The Management Institute for Quality-of-Life Studies (MIQOLS) is pleased to announce the launch of the Weighted Index of Social Progress (WISP). The WISP is a quality-of-life metric innovation of Professor Richard J. Estes, Professor Emeritus of Social Work and Policy at the University of Pennsylvania (USA). Professor Estes has developed the WISP in the 1970s and has reported the quality of life on many countries and world regions since (from 1970s up to 2018) (see references to his publications regarding the WISP in (click Show Sources).

    Specifically, Professor Estes’ WISP is a composite index of quality of life at the country level. That is, the WISP index captures quality of life of the vast majority of the countries (countries that maintains social indicators data). The WISP consists of an overall composite score of each country (shown as an actual score varying from 0 to 100, ranks, and standard deviation from the mean). The overall index is made up of 10 subindices: education, health, women status, defense effort, economic, demography, environmental, social chaos, cultural cohesion, and welfare effort.

    The Education Subindex is made up of four indicators: (1) Public Expenditures on Education as Percentage of GDP (+; i.e., the positive sign indicates that the higher the score the higher the quality of life); (2) Primary School Completion Rate (+); (3) Secondary School Net Enrollment Rate (+); and (4) Adult Literacy Rate (+).

    The Health Subindex consists of six indicators: (1) Life Expectation at Birth (+); (2) Infant Mortality Rate (-; i.e., the negative sign indicates that the higher the score the lower the quality of life); (3) Under-Five Child Mortality Rate (-); (4) Physician Per 100,000 Population (+); Percent of Population Undernourished (-); and (6) Public Expenditure on Health as Percentage of GDP (+).

    The Women Status Subindex consists of five indicators: (1) Female Adult Literacy as Percentage of Male Literacy (+); (2) Contraceptive Prevalence among Married Women (+); (3) Maternal Mortality Rate (-); (4) Female Secondary School Enrollment as Percentage of Male Enrollment (+); and (5) Seats in Parliament Held by Women as Percentage of Total (+).

    The Defense Effort Subindex consists of one indicator, namely Military Expenditures as Percentage of GDP (-).

    The Economic Subindex consists five indicators: (1) Per Capita Gross National Income as Measured by PPP (+); (2) Percent Growth in GDP (+); (3) Unemployment Rate (-); (4) Total External Debt as Percentage of GDP (-); and (6) GINI Index Score (-).

    The Demography Subindex comprise three indicators: (1) Average Annual Rate of Population Growth (-); (2) Percent of Population Aged < 15 years (-); (3) Percent of Population Aged > 64 Years (+).

    The Environmental Subindex has three indicators: (1) Percentage of Nationally Protected Area (+); (2) Average Annual Number of Disaster-Related Death (-); and (3) Per Capita Metric Tons of Carbon-Dioxide Emissions (-).

    The Social Chaos Subindex has six indicators: (1) Violations of Political Rights (-); (2) Violations of Civil Liberties (-); (3) Number of Internally Displaced Persons Per 100,000 Population (-); (4) Number of Externally Displaced Person Per 100,000 Population (-); (5) Estimated Number of Deaths from Armed Conflicts (-); and (6) Perceived Corruption Index (-).

     The Cultural Cohesion Subindex has three indicators: (1) Largest Percentage of Population Sharing the Same or Similar Racial/Ethnic Origins (+); (2) Largest Percentage of Population Sharing the Same or Similar Religious Beliefs (+); and (3) Largest Share of Population Sharing the Same Mother Tongue (+).

    Finally, the Welfare Effort Subindex has five indicators: (1) Age First National Laws-Old Age, Invalidity & Death (+), (2) Age First National Laws-Sickness & Maternity (+); (3) Age First National Laws-Work Injury (+); (4) Age First National Laws-Unemployment (+); (5) Age First National Laws-Family Allowance (+).

    Please visit the WISP metric on MIQOLS’ website at and start using it for research and to guide public policy decisions at the national and international levels.


The International Society for
Quality-of-Life Studies

P.O. Box 118
Gilbert, Arizona, 85299, USA


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