Košice as a city of happy inhabitants
The project Košice 2.0 emphasizes the well-being of citizens and quality of life from many perspectives. Therefore, we decided to answer the essential questions – (1) what do we have in mind when talking about well-being in Košice 2.0 project, (2) how can we improve the well-being of citizens, and (3) how can we measure the improvement. We asked for help from Professor Oto Hudec from the Technical University of Košice, an expert on urban and regional development.
Well-being in the Košice 2.0 project
English word well-being doesn't have a unanimous translation in the Slovak language yet. Slovak versions can be welfare, quality of life, satisfaction, contentment, and happiness.
Every one of us has specific priorities and expectations of life. The 21st century has enabled us to fulfill our dreams, needs, and different lifestyles. Our expectations have risen enormously along with demands on the quality of life also influenced by the place we live in and work.
It is essential for cities, including Košice, to set their key indicators and work with them to improve citizens' quality of life. There are at least four main definitions of well-being with corresponding methods of measurement.
- Subjective well-being is an individual state of feeling healthy and happy. It is an overall state of satisfaction with one's life. It is essential to gather information about subjective well-being in the form of researches and surveying people. If we use the same question for the survey, we can evaluate the average satisfaction in the city or country.
- Quality of life covers a complex and multidimensional concept – the life condition of people in a country/city, which results from the combined influence of many factors. They can be ecological, demographical, social, cultural, economic, or environmental. Usually, we define dimensions of quality of life and a set of indicators in each of them. Consequently, you can track the overall quality and the quality in each of them and compare it among different countries and places.
- Happiness is a measure in which people evaluate the overall quality of their current lives. Cultural factors strongly influence goals of personal happiness. Measuring happiness, similarly to subjective well-being, relies on subjectively assessed results.
- Quality of Place – improving the quality of a place through urban design and planning brings environmental, social, and economic benefits and improves citizens' quality of life. There is a mix of quantitative and qualitative approaches that evaluate significant factors of the quality of places influencing the quality of living and physical and social infrastructure.
You can read the whole article on the Košice 2.0 project website