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Subjective resource assessments and future outlook in an unstable and stable economy

Författare och institution:
Gró Einarsdóttir (Psykologiska institutionen); Lars-Olof Johansson (Psykologiska institutionen)
Publicerad i:
ICAP 2014, From Crisis to Sustainable Well-being, s. 290
Konferensbidrag - refereegranskat abstract
Sammanfattning (abstract):
How can current and future generations sustainably manage common and personal resources? A starting point in answering such important and broad questions might lay in how resource assessments are made at an individual level. Research has shown that resource scarcity predicts a wide variety of factors such as a drop in IQ, excessive borrowing and inability to make friends. Less is known about how people assess different types of resources and how these can be measured and used for prediction. We propose that although objective resources are important the subjective perception of those resources matter even more. Four studies were conducted. A hypothesized model of the relationship between resource assessments and future outlook was first constructed from two studies that looked at answers to open ended questions (qualitative method, n = 24) and tested preliminary items (n =132). In order to test this model two surveys were conducted, one in Iceland (n=457) and one in Sweden (n=1033). Since Icelandic economy has fluctuated greatly in recent years while Swedish economy has been relatively stable we predicted more salience of resource availability in Iceland. Confirming this, resource assessments were more predictive of future outlook in Iceland than in Sweden. In both countries assessments of emotional and economic resources positively predicted future outlook. This was partially mediated through a global assessment of future resources. In addition, a negative assessment of time resources predicted a positive future outlook in Iceland but not in Sweden. Resource assessments were more predictive of thoughts about one’s personal future than of society’s future. As expected the objective measure of household income did predict a small part of the variance in future outlook. However, when a more subjective measure of economic resources was used the prediction was stronger. This research suggests a way to measure resource assessments and shows that a measurement of subjective resources can be used to predict future outlook. The differences between the countries remain a subject for further study although some interpretations are suggested. For example, Icelanders that are pressed for time might see the future as bright because they are spending time in order to receive future rewards. Possible implications include using the model to inform economic and environmental policy.
Ämne (baseras på Högskoleverkets indelning av forskningsämnen):
Future outlook, Resource assessments, Scarcity and abundance
Postens nummer:
Posten skapad:
2014-10-01 10:29
Posten ändrad:
2014-10-29 16:47

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