Date of Award:

12-2010

Document Type:

Thesis

Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)

Department:

Sociology, Social Work, and Anthropology

Advisor/Chair:

John C. Allen

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to accurately identify residents of a boomtown who are either experiencing a higher level of well-being, or lower level of well-being. By definition, we consider the former to be winning, and the latter to be losing. Multivariate ordinary least squares regression analyses help to distinguish between winners and losers by generating statistical coefficients which will show both strength and direction of the relationship between individuals and various indicators of social well-being.

The data used in this thesis are from a community impact study issued in the spring of 2009, to residents of Uintah County, UT. Uintah County is a modern-day boomtown that is dependent on natural resources, particularly oil and natural gas, as a large part of the economy and social make-up of the community. The key independent variables used in this study are age, length of residence, and income, and are regressed against a variety of well-being indicators including community satisfaction, closeness with neighbors, satisfaction with law enforcement, satisfaction with local schools, and satisfaction with medical and health services.

The results indicate that the older a resident is, the longer they have lived in the community, and the less money they have, the more satisfied with well-being indicators they will be. Income had little significant effect on the well-being indicators, though age and length of residence are positively statistically significant in every model. As a result, there remains much to discover for the future of boomtown research, including the effects income has on well-being, as well as the indications boomtowns have on communities in the early parts of the twenty-first century.

Comments

This work made publicly available electronically on October 1, 2010.

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