Survey on happiness focuses on jobs, tuitions
The top priority for the government next year is job creation, a survey by Hyundai Research Institute (HRI) said yesterday, and that will increase the level of happiness in Korea.
According to the survey of 1,011 men and women above the age of 20, 45.4 percent said they were happy, while 44 percent said they were happy at times, and 10.2 percent said they were not happy.
The happiness level actually increased 5 percentage points from 40.5 percent in a survey done in September 2012.
Senior citizens above the age of 50 were the least happy. Only 37.2 percent said they felt happy. As to whether they are happier this year than last year, only 15.6 percent said they were.
For respondents in their 30s, 51.9 percent said they were happy, the largest among all the age groups.
The happiest groups were college graduates, people in their 30s, women in general, people living in Chungcheong and civil servants.
The groups that reported they were happier this year compared to last were young women in their 20s to 40s, people in Chungcheong and civil servants.
Respondents said there were various ways to improve happiness including job creation, alleviation of tuition burdens, more welfare and housing market stability, the HRI said.
Of those surveyed, 28 percent said job creation was the most urgent task of all. The groups that said this were baby boomers who have not prepared for retirement, college graduates facing a tough job market and housewives who want to work to support their families.
Meanwhile, welfare and so-called economic democratization, the biggest issues in last year’s presidential campaign, have become less important issues. The respondents said they were more concerned with personal safety, followed by retirement and housing.
The support for policies to prevent crime were the highest.
An increase in household debt was cited as the biggest economic uncertainty for next year by 19.8 percent, followed by sluggish consumption and the economic downturn (18.5 percent), poor job creation (18.4 percent), price instability (18.1 percent) and instability in the housing market (12.8 percent).
BY KIM JUNG-YOON [firstname.lastname@example.org]