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Understanding well-being

From America’s Health Insurance Plans:

The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, a unique twenty-five year partnership in research and care, is an on-going daily survey that began in January 2008. It surveys 1,000 Americans 350 days per year.

The research and methodology underlying the Well-Being Index is based on the World Health Organization definition of health as “not only the absence of infirmity and disease, but also a state of physical, mental, and social well-being.”

While I can’t really say what “1000 people 350 days per year” really means, here’s a nice map of the aggregate measure of well-being (if you click on it, you will get a slightly larger version):


It’s an interesting dataset and it would be interesting to see some analysis about the factors associated with well-being. If you do it using the tables that are available from the site, post a comment, and I’ll add it to the entry later on.

As for the visualization – I would have preferred a continuous color scale, rather than having it collapsed into just 5 levels. Also, the boundaries between districts only have to be drawn when the color for both districts is the same (quite rarely, if you follow the advice from the previous sentence) and when there is no other border closer than n pixels (because the boundaries are less important than the colors indicating the variable of interest).

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