King's College London

Research portal

From objectivity to subjectivity: conceptualization and measurement of well-being in mental health

Research output: Contribution to journalLiterature reviewpeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)525-534
Number of pages10
JournalCognitive Neuropsychiatry
Volume3
Issue number5
DOIs
PublishedOct 2013

King's Authors

Abstract

The concept of well-being has not been well defined or reliably measured in academic research. This article identifies four academic strands of well-being conceptualization and measurement (economic, medical, psychological and integrative) and shows how well-being has shifted from being conceived as a collectivist concept with objective measures, to being conceived in individualistic terms with subjective measures. Given its clinical relevance the main emphasis is on subjective well-being. While well-being has become a key concept in mental health, the article also discusses some limitations to its use in practice and proposes considerations for future research. Key issues are a consensus definition of well-being in people with mental illness, and empirical studies on the measurement of well-being and its determinants. Future research might be based on the good life approach, the Complete State Model of Mental Health or the academic field of Positive Psychology.

View graph of relations

© 2020 King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS | England | United Kingdom | Tel +44 (0)20 7836 5454