Curious About the Survey?

WHY DO THIS?

Traditionally, we look to economic statistics to measure how we are doing as a province. Those data aren’t wrong – but they are incomplete. We need new ways of measuring and improving the things that make us happy, healthy and fulfilled. When we asked Nova Scotians how they think we should measure success (on a scale of 1 to 10), 68% said “By growing the economy,” and 81% said “By improving our quality of life.”

WHAT DO WE KNOW NOW ABOUT QUALITY IN LIFE OUR PROVINCE?

The work of GPI Atlantic between 2000 and 2009 gave us many insights. More recently, Engage Nova Scotia’s  2018 Nova Scotia Quality of Life Index established a foundation of data for how we have performed as a province over the past 20 years compared to Canada as a whole. But the 2019 Quality of Life Survey will give us the most in-depth, up-to-date picture of how Nova Scotians assess their current quality of life ever gathered.

From recent research led by Prof. John Helliwell we already know that Nova Scotians are more satisfied with their lives than the Canadian average. This Survey will enable us to dig deeper into what’s underneath that overall finding. Who is doing well and who isn’t? And what are the variables that affect life satisfaction? All at a level of regional specificity we’ve never had before.

WHAT’S DIFFERENT ABOUT THIS SURVEY?

  1. The survey explores topics that often get forgotten when we consider what makes us happy, healthy and fulfilled – like loneliness, discrimination, life satisfaction, work-life balance and healthy work conditions.

  2. For those who identify as being part of a marginalized population or visible minority, this shines a new light on their challenges and opportunities because of the high sample size.

  3. Individual reports will be created for 10 distinct regions of the province. Our intention is that these reports will act as the foundation for collective community planning and action for years to come.

WILL THIS WORK LEAD TO CHANGE?

We all know of reports that only “collect dust.” This project is designed to avoid that. Already, in 10 regions of the province, with the substantial support of NSCC principals, local teams are mobilized to drive participation, analyse results and create action when the data becomes available for their regions of the province. In addition, at a province-wide level, organizations with widely different interests – from environmental to economic, and social to cultural concerns – are working together to do the same thing.

HOW CAN I GET INVOLVED?

There will be lots of opportunities to get involved in the action parts of this initiative at a local and provincial level. Learn more on the Take Action page.

WHY CAN’T EVERYONE FILL OUT THE SURVEY?

The survey is being sent to one in five households in Nova Scotia on a randomized basis to ensure we get as thorough a mix of ages, genders and locations participating as possible. The number and mix of surveys distributed is calibrated to enable a deep understanding of what individuals and communities are experiencing across Nova Scotia, with specific reports prepared for ten regions.

WILL MY INFORMATION BE USED FOR ANOTHER PURPOSE?

The Canadian Index of Wellbeing, our partner in the creation of this survey, follows strict standards to ensure that information that could identify individuals is kept confidential and that only verified researchers have access to the raw data for purposes aligned with the intent of the Quality of Life Initiative, i.e. improving the quality of life of people living in Nova Scotia. The aggregated data will be made more broadly available, but nothing that will enable the identification of any individual or recognizable group.

I’M HAVING DIFFICULTY FILLING IT OUT.

If you are having trouble filling out the survey online call 1-844-417-6277 (toll free) or email ciw.kai@uwaterloo.ca. For a paper version of the survey (in English or French) or for general information, call 902-407-2582 or email survey@engagenovascotia.ca. High speed Internet access and assistance going online is available at all @NS sites. To find the site closest to you, or with general questions about the survey, call 211.

WHO IS BEHIND THIS?

Engage Nova Scotia is a non-profit organization aspiring for us to be more collaborative, inclusive and adaptive to change. We work with, and are supported by business, governments, academic and community groups.

HOW MUCH DOES THIS COST AND WHO IS PAYING?

The budget for the Quality of Life survey project is $542,000. The costs relate to community consultations, printing of survey invitations, mailings to 1 in 5 Nova Scotia households, research analysis, preparation and production of 10 unique quality of life reports for 10 regions of the province. This is the most comprehensive project of its type undertaken in Canada.

We receive financial support from a range of partners including the provincial government, municipal governments, as well as private sector and academic partners like the Nova Scotia Community College who are undertaking related and complementary measurement work associated with the One Nova Scotia goals. To learn more about who supports Engage Nova Scotia visit engagenovascotia.ca/supporting-investors.