Exploring predictors of life satisfaction and happiness among Siberian older adults living in Tomsk Region
Despite the growing interest in studying factors affecting subjective well-being of older adults, little research has been conducted on vast territory of Siberia (Russia) with large population. To address this lack of evidence, we explored the relationship between subjective well-being and social aspects (social and emotional support, social network, and social activities), living conditions (standards of living and residence area), self-reported health, and demographic characteristics in older adults living in Tomsk Region, Siberia. Subjective well-being was measured by life satisfaction and happiness (each measured with one 11-point question). Sample included 489 community-dwelling respondents, aged 65 or older. We found that mean life satisfaction and happiness reported by our respondents were lower than those of European countries. Higher quality of social interaction, better standards of living, and being satisfied with own health were associated with higher life satisfaction and happiness. This study provides original data on a region barely investigated and suggests that Siberian older adults receive strong benefits from social support and from social network and that similar factors are related to subjective well-being both in Siberian and Eastern European older adults. Future studies should further explore the relationship between different kinds of social support (e.g., psychological vs. material support) and subjective well-being in different Siberian ethnic groups or regions.