Determinants of Overall Quality of Life
We attempt to find the factors that affect overall quality of life by fitting regressions for individual country/society data and fitting multilevel regressions for pooled data. Our findings include that, firstly, life domains in the public sphere are less important determinants for overall life quality measured by happiness, enjoyment, or achievement. Secondly, (relative) standard of living is important for levels of overall quality of life in Asia. Among specific life domains, health is important to the feelings of happiness and enjoyment but does not quite matter to the feeling of achievement. Family life is important to the feeling of happiness for married people, while leisure is important to the feelings of enjoyment and achievement for them. Owning home especially enhances the feeling of achievement for the Asian people. Among demographic characteristics, seniors are less likely to feel happy but more likely to have a sense of accomplishment instead. Similarly, income is likely to enhance the feeling of achievement instead of the feeling of happiness for Asian people. Finally, marriage and being married is very important for the quality of life in Asia.
When we examine subregion by subregion, we found that East Asian countries have the following common characteristics: physical conditions for survival and good life are deemed very important, social relations are no less important, public sphere conditions tend to be of tertiary importance, and globalization has been adapted slowly but steadily. In Southeast Asia, housing, household income, and standard of living, that is, materialist life sphere, are important except in Brunei. Housing and standard of living are key features of South Asia, and friendships and family life are important in some countries in South Asia. Key feature in Central Asia is (relative) standard of living and housing matters in some countries in Central Asia.