This paper uses both objective and subjective indicators to investigate the impacts of coal mining on the wellbeing of host communities. It also looks at the relationship between these two measurements of wellbeing. Both objective and subjective indicators show that coal mining has no obvious impact on family income, but negative impacts on air quality. Subjective wellbeing indicators also reveal the negative impacts of coal mining on water safety, inflation rate, price of necessities and income disparity. The only positive impact associated with coal mining is the improvement of housing conditions, revealed by only objective indicators. Some objective indicators are good predictors of subjective wellbeing indicators (e.g. income and air quality) using both aggregated data and individual data, others not (e.g. housing and education). The inconsistency between objective and subjective indicators might be attributed to scope issues, scale discordance etc. This paper empirically confirms both sets of indicators are needed when measuring wellbeing, and illustrates approaches to examine the relationship between objective and subjective wellbeing indicators.
Social Indicators Research – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 10, 2017
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