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Study Connects Access to Tech with Feelings of Well-Being

Sat May 22, 2010 - 3:36 PM EDT - By Annie Latham

A new global study from BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT, shows that access to information technology has a "statistically significant, positive impact on life satisfaction."

Called "The Information Dividend: Can IT make you happier?" the report is based on an analysis of the World Values Survey, and contains responses from 35,000 people globally. The findings suggest there may well be an "information dividend" - a personal and social benefit which comes from access to information and IT.

The study's author, social scientist Michael Willmott remarked, "People with IT access are more satisfied with life even when taking account of income. Our analysis suggests that IT has an enabling and empowering role in people’s lives by increasing their sense of freedom and control, which has a positive impact on well-being or happiness."

According to the BCS, the interest in "well being" or life satisfaction has become a hot topic in recent years as academics, policy makers and politicians have sought ways to define happiness and redefine the role of Government in addressing the fact that "happiness" appears to flat-line once a society reaches a certain economic level.

Note: BCS, the Chartered Institute for IT was formerly known as British Computer Society.


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