Findings on happiness in Howell et al. (2006): study MY 2003

Author(s)Howell, C.J.; Howell, R.T.; Schwabe, K.A.
TitleDoes Wealth Enhance Life Satisfaction for People Who Are Materially Deprived? Exploring the Association among the 'Orang Asli' of Peninsular Malaysia.
SourceSocial Indicators Research, 2006, Vol. 76, 499 - 524
PublicHeads of households, Malaysia, 2003
 Heads of poor households in nine remote villages from the Jah Hut; an ethnic group; population approximately 2600. Average age approximately 42 years. 82% had no formal education. The mean number of members living in each household was 6,85.
Collect period3
Survey nameNot available
SampleProbability systematic sample
 In the largest and most homogeneous village every other household participated in the research; in the other villages all households participated.
Respondents N =307
Non Response4,6%
AssesmentInterview: face-to-face
 Structured interview
Happiness measure(s) used
Full textSelfreport on five questions: A I am very content with my life B Nothing is currently lacking in my life C When I examine my life as a whole, I feel I am not meeting my aspirations* D I feel dissatisfied because I'm not doing everything that I want to be doing in my life* Rating: 1 strongly disagree . . 7 strongly agree * reversed keyed item Name: Contentment with life assesment Scale (CLASS)
Author's labelLife Satisfaction
Page in publication509
RemarksTransalation of the SWLS from English to Malay created problems for respondents in understanding. The fifth item on the SWLS was awkwardly worded (if you could change your life, would you change it? Eventually only the first four items were used to construct a single 4-item factor, which explained 48% of the variance in the 4 items. This factor, with a 1-7-scale instead of a 1-5-scale, was used as a measure for life satisfaction.
Finding used in
nation ranks
 On original range 1 - 7On range 0 - 10
Standard deviation1.17

Correlational findings

Author's labelSubject Code
Subject description
Age of respondentA04abCurrent age (in years)
Education level respondentE01ab02Level of school-education
Family Size; number of household members.H20ab03Number of persons in household
Log of savingsP12ab05Savings
Material wealthP12ab02Specific possessions
Recent household illnessH14ab04Days ill
wealth composite index; possessions&savingsP12ab01Total wealth