The project will problematize welfare inequalities in the region of South-Savo and the city of Mikkeli by means of statistical and qualitative analyses. The research material will enable the analysis of the health and welfare related differences between the rural and urban localities even at the level of villages and neighbourhoods. Ultimately, the project will promote the overall goal of developing healthy and sustainable places and communities (see The Marmot Review, 2010).
The project will:
- analyze the place-based data on wellbeing (with survey-data)
- map the resources of local actors (public, private and third sector)
- analyze local actors interpretations about the health and welfare inequalities (with qualitative material)
- utilize the place-based welfare knowledge
- clarify the roles of public, private and third sector actors and motivate them working together in order to diminish the welfare gap in the local context
- test the new methods on the local level
The research questions are:
- What are the regional and local welfare inequalities in South Savo region and the city of Mikkeli?
- What kind of (multi actor) measures help to countreract the health inequalities in the city of Mikkeli/South Savo region?
The research data consists of quantitative and qualitative materials, which together make up what is called the place-based welfare knowledge (here).The research data includes the Regional Health and Wellbeing Study (ATH, from its Finnish initials) produced by the National Institute for Health and Welfare. It provides municipalities and municipal federations with necessary prerequisites to monitor their residents' health and well-being together with the factors affecting them.
The follow-up data on essential phenomena that are not available in the registers (for instance on local lifestyles and experiences) are collected through key informant and focus group interviews.
There is a substantial need to collect and analyze the health and welfare data at the municipal and regional levels and to look for alternative solutions (models, methods, experiments) for the observed welfare deficits and differences in partnership with the local municipal, non-governmental and business actors.
The project will result in:
- improved knowledge about the regional and local health and welfare inequalities among the local actors
- mobilisation of actors (residents, local governments, NGOs and business actors) to reduce the welfare inequalities
- better targeting of the available welfare resources
- better use of the means of the civil society
- inputs for developing of the Welfare Report in Mikkeli and also in South Savo (regional welfare report)
The project is funded by European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and city of Mikkeli.