Thomas Smith, National Opinion Research Center
PUBLICATION DATE 2005
Russell Sage Foundation Working Paper Series
This paper describes the life-events approach that provides both a theoretical underpinning and a practical framework for developing a general measure of societal well-being. The paper describes: 1) the life-events approach, 2) the selection of which life domains and specific life events to measure within each domain, 3) procedures for developing seriousness ratings for the selected life events, 4) the distributions of life-event scores across social groups, and 5) changes in the distribution of specific problems, domain-specific scores, and the overall level of troubles between 1991 and 2004.