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Older Workers and Life Satisfaction

Analysis of the 2002 National Study of the Changing Workforce to identify factors that explain variation in the life satisfaction of older workers.

key research question

  • What factors explain the variation in life satisfaction among older workers?

selected findings

In 2002, among US workers aged 50 or older:

  • 16% had a graduate or professional degree.
  • 79% reported that they are in good or excellent physical health.
  • 82% had health insurance paid in part/entirely by their employers.
  • 72% have employers who contribute to pension/retirement plans.
  • 19% have a high level of access to flexible work arrangements.

In 2002, among US workers aged 50 or older, the odds of being very satisfied in life are:

  • 61% higher for those who have a high level of flexibility at the workplace.
  • 66% higher for females than for males.
  • 177% higher for those in good or excellent health than those in poor or fair health.
  • 145% higher for those living with spouses/partners than for those in other living arrangements.

In 2002, among US workers aged 50 or older:

  • 22% of workers reporting they have “extra money after their monthly expenses” have high level of flexibility at the workplace in comparison to the 14 percent of those who do not have “extra money after their monthly expenses”.

   

publications

contact 

For questions of information regarding the Older Workers and Life Satisfaction project, or to schedule a conversation with any of the Center’s team, please contact:

617-552-9195 | agework@bc.edu

   

the older workers and life satisfaction project team

Elyssa Besen, PhD
Research Scientist
Center for Disability Research, Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety
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  Jessica K. McCabe Johnson, MSW, MPA
Research Assistant
Sloan Center on Aging & Work, Boston College
Doctoral Student
Graduate School of Social Work, Boston College
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Christina Matz-Costa, MSW, PhD
Senior Research Associate
Sloan Center on Aging & Work, Boston College
Assistant Professor
Graduate School of Social Work at Boston College
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Marcie Pitt-Catsouphes, PhD
Director
Sloan Center on Aging & Work, Boston College
Professor
Graduate School of Social Work & Carroll School of Management, Boston College
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Michael Smyer, PhD
Provost
Bucknell University
Research Fellow
Sloan Center on Aging & Work, Boston College
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