Disaggregating the Measurement of Quality of Urban Life Dimensions Across a Complex Metro Region: The Case of Metro Detroit

  • Byoung-Suk KweonEmail author
  • Robert W. Marans
Part of the Social Indicators Research Series book series (SINS, volume 45)


Quality of life (QOL) is influenced by multiple socioeconomic, psychological, and geographical factors. Earlier research has demonstrated that relationships exist between selected socioeconomic, demographic, and psychological factors and QOL. However, the influence of geographic factors on QOL has not been as extensively explored. This chapter investigates the geographic patterns of QOL in Metro Detroit and explores appropriate scales for examining spatial patterns showing QOL differences. Data from the 2001 Detroit Area Study are used to examine QOL at two geographic scales: the type of place where respondents live and their county of residence. Type of place is a composite measure consisting of type of governmental unit, its population size, and its geographic relation to the metro area’s urban core (Detroit). The analysis indicates that a more accurate picture of QOL differences within a large metropolitan area can be portrayed when considering both geographic scales simultaneously. Multiple-scale analysis enables policy makers to focus on specific geographic areas where enhancements might be made to improve the lives of people.


Life Satisfaction Census Tract Geographic Scale Urban Core Local Park 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Plant Science & Landscape ArchitectureUniversity of MarylandCollege ParkUSA
  2. 2.Institute for Social ResearchUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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