The Kyoto University Kokoro Research Center's
"Regional Happiness and Culture Project"

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In this Regional Happiness and Culture Project, we are

analyzing local regions and communities from a new perspective

We began this Regional Happiness and Culture Project in 2015 as part of the research and development project,
"Designing a Sustainable Society through Intergenerational Co-creation",
which is run by the Research Institute of Science and Technology for Society (RISTEX) of the Japan Science and Technology Agency (JST).

This project is developing a "Measurement Package" that takes a new,
multidimensional approach to the measurement of local community wealth.
With this Measurement Package, we will analyze the strengths and weaknesses that exist within communities from the perspective of Social and Cultural Psychology, and will investigate the relationship that community values and social ties have with personal perceptions of happiness within daily life.

Multidimensional Indicators of Regional HappinessMeasurement Package for Regional Happiness

We are developing a Measurement Package for the purpose of capturing multiple dimensions of the conditions in local communities.
It is a tool for analyzing where the strengths of their communities lie and what elements of their communities are important to them.
The package is a questionnaire that can be distributed to residents of local communities.

Take the trial survey of Multidimensional Indicators of Regional Happiness

This is the Measurement Package for Regional Happiness, which measures regional happiness from various angles.
It is an assessment that uses an easy-to-answer survey format. The items measure aspects that are important to regional happiness, such as subjective happiness and sense of health, relational bonds within the region, contributions to one's local region, supporting other people and regional openness to outsiders.

A survey for grasping the actual conditions of local communities from various angles

This project combines various methodologies from psychology and ecological science in order to grasp and analyze the characteristics of regional societies.
To analyze the characteristics of different ecological regions (e.g., urban, farming, fishing communities), we have used paper-based and online surveys, face-to-face interview surveys, third-person field surveys of residential environments and wearable electronics that measure individuals' physical activity levels and social network contacts.

PreviousRegional Activity Reports

During previous regional participatory research (interviews and participant observation) conducted in places such as Omiya Town (Kyotango City) and the Minami Uzumasa School District (Ukyo Ward, Kyoto City), in Kyoto Prefecture and Takizawa City in Iwate Prefecture, workshops were held in collaboration with local citizens. Information on these activities can be found on this page.

To everyone who supported our project:

Since 2012, this project has conducted several paper-based surveys. Roughly 40,000 households across about 500 regional communities were sent survey questionnaires via mail, and a large proportion of residents responded.
On this page, we report some of the results of these surveys.
We also provide here an explanation of how to use the equipment that was used in the Omiyacho district of Kyotango City to collect data on activity levels and social networks.


Trial Version Multidimensional survey of Regional Happiness

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Results of the trial survey

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Sense of health
Respondent’s subjective health status
Sense of personal happiness
Respondent’s subjective sense of happiness
Sense of interdependent happiness
Sense of harmonious happiness with the people around you (for example, if people around you are happy, you feel happy too)
Social bonds within the community
Cooperative and trusting relationships between local residents
Sense of regional unity
Extent to which the local society feels like it is "a community that was destined to be" or "one collective unit"
Openness of the community to outsiders
Extent to which people accept others from outside or those who are different from them
Contributing to the community and supporting other people
Behaviors that contribute to the local community (e.g., providing idea for the community) or help other people within the community
  • ※The score for the demo version is presented as an individual score, but the actual research data is analyzed together with the surveys from the same town (e.g., village, regions)
  • ※The Demo Version does not contain all of the items from the actual Measurement Package.