Society and Demographic Transition › Population and Social Stratification
Hsiao, H. H. M., Wong, K. T. W., Wan, P. S. & Zheng, V. (2019). The impact of experience and perceptions of social mobility on the life satisfaction of young people in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Asian Journal of Comparative Politics, 1–18. https://doi.org/10.1177/2057891119848490
Hong Kong Life Satisfaction Social Mobility Taiwan Youth
This article, which is based on a comparative telephone survey conducted in 2016, examines the relationship between social mobility experience and the life satisfaction of people aged 18 to 35 in Taiwan and Hong Kong. Using both objective and subjective measures of social mobility, we found that young people’s perceptions of their own social mobility and that of the entire youth population correlated positively with life satisfaction. However, the objective upward experiences of intragenerational and intergenerational mobility did not have a significant effect on life satisfaction. In addition, the objective upward experiences of individuals were found to be uncorrelated with the perceptions of their own social mobility and that of the entire youth population. These findings suggest that young people will not become more satisfied even if they themselves have actually experienced upward mobility, because their positive perception of social mobility depends on whether they can move upward to their desired status. It is the expected social mobility and the competence to achieve rather than the actual past mobility experience that could affect the life satisfaction of the young generation in Taiwan and Hong Kong.