Priorities for future work

  • • One priority for future research is establishing whether valid and reliable short- or single-item measures can be developed for positive and negative affect and for eudaimonia measures.
  • • Establishing the optimal response format for affective measures - including the number of response options and whether frequency, intensity or binary scales should be preferred - is a key issue for future work. This should be linked to the quest to find the response format that can best convey scale unipolarity in a consistent manner to respondents. The most appropriate reference period for life satisfaction and eudaimonia measures also requires further work - and one key criterion in this case will be the policy relevance of the resulting measures.
  • • Further systematic investigation of the specific impact of response formats on response biases is also warranted, especially the relationship between agree/disagree, true/false and yes/no response formats and acquiescence.
  • • Additional research is also needed to better understand and prevent any problems respondents have in switching between positively- and negatively-framed questions. Across a module of several subjective well-being questions, it would also be helpful to know whether the benefits of keeping the response format the same (in terms of time and respondent effort) are greater than the benefits of changing response formats between questions (which could help to more clearly mark a difference between different measures, and could potentially also help respondents perform the mental switch required to answer different questions).
 
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