Date of Graduation
The term quality of life has been described as a vague entity (Grayson and Young, 1994) and conceptualizing it, has proved to be difficult. Nevertheless, understanding how individuals form their needs to create life satisfaction is important because these subjective evaluations determine life adjustment and mobility behavior and is the basis of demand for public actions. Additionally, more effective social programs can be designed based on the knowledge of how individuals form their needs to create life satisfaction and avoid problems that may result because the perceptions of the planners and policy makers do not always coincide with those of the community. The current study used quality of life survey data from a random sample of over 1028 individuals from 21 counties in West Virginia with several objectives. (1) To examine the quality of life aspects that are important to and that result from living and working in rural areas. (2) To determine the economic relationships between quality of life and a set of socio-economic variables. (3) To examine the linkage between rural development and rural quality of life. Using a categorical measure of overall quality of life satisfaction and regression analysis with multiplicative heteroscedasiticity ordered probit model, the study examined the effect of a set of demographic, socioeconomic and policy variables on quality of life satisfaction and development. The results suggested that quality of life satisfaction is affected by an array of socioeconomic and individual attributes. With regard to income distribution, the objectives were to examine the distribution of per capita income between the counties and to investigate whether West Virginia county data supported the view that â€œconvergence of incomes at the level of regions was replaced by divergence in the 1970s.â€ To address these objectives the study employed both cross-section and time series data. The results concur with the conclusions reached by previous studies that divergence in the 1970s replaced convergence that was observed in the earlier decades. Second, the results show that the gap in per capita real income between the southern and eastern panhandle counties narrowed after the 1960s, though at a slow rate of about 2 percent per year.
Bukenya, James Obadiah, "An analysis of quality of life, income distribution and rural development in West Virginia." (2001). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 8547.