This study attempts to deconstruct the concept of quality of life in order to better understand what the concept means for older people. The focus is on the transport dimension, where quality of life is broken down into three headings: mobility patterns, locality and social networks. The paper first summarizes secondary data, and then systematically presents data from interviews with 1,000 people aged 65 years and over as part of the British Office for National Statistics Omnibus Surveys in Britain. A substantial amount of diversity and variation is found in the data by quality of life ratings and the expectations of the respondents. The perceptions of what constitutes quality of life can be reconstructed in terms of six factors: (1) people's standards of social comparison and expectations of life; (2) a sense of optimism; (3) having good health and physical functioning; (4) engaging in a large number of social activities and feeling supported; (5) living in a neighborhood with good community facilities and services; and (6) feeling safe in one's neighborhood. The results suggest that both the active (travel related) and passive (locality and social networks) elements need to be brought together in order to better understand quality of life for the elderly.

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    The Boulevard, Langford Lane
    Kidlington, Oxford  United Kingdom  OX5 1GB
  • Authors:
    • Banister, D
    • Bowling, A
  • Publication Date: 2004-4


  • English

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  • Accession Number: 00974020
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: May 13 2004 12:00AM