Vital Signs: Quality-of-Life Indicators for Virginia’s Technology Corridor

  • Terri Lynn Cornwell
Part of the Social Indicators Research Series book series (SINS, volume 22)


During the 1990s 12 counties and 5 cities in western Virginia joined the growing number of areas across the country in designing and tracking so-called “quality-of life” indicators. This region, first called the “New Century Region” and later “Virginia’s Technology Corridor,” participated in a comprehensive visioning process that provided the foundation for “Vital Signs,” a community quality-of-life indicators project. This chapter traces the background of Vital Signs and its initial structure and funding sources. It provides an overview of the process for choosing initial indicators, the project’s research design, and how the research was analyzed. Also included in the chapter are discussions of objective data (environmental, social, and economic statistics) gathered from the most reliable sources available at the time and subjective data (individuals’ perceptions of their quality of life) gathered from a mail survey to 3,200 households throughout the region. Analysis of both the objective and subjective research provided policymakers in western Virginia guidance in enhancing existing programs or creating new programs to meet the needs of the region. The chapter concludes with lessons learned during the first six years of the project.


Vital Sign Community Indicator Solid Waste Disposal Indicator Project Physical Fitness Test 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Terri Lynn Cornwell
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Communication StudiesLiberty UniversityLynchburgUSA

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