Macquarie University
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Explanatory framework for well-being theories: systematic, comprehensive, persistent

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posted on 2022-03-28, 20:37 authored by Myriam Pitre
Well-being is a broad construct widely acknowledged for being multidimensional, multidisciplinary and dynamic in nature. There is a growing need for a framework to assist in building comprehensive theories providing an explanation for well-being outcomes. In this thesis, a systems approach to well-being theories is proposed following research traditions in personality and organizational psychology and other disciplines. In these latter domains, a systems approach has provided many benefits including increased understanding of complex phenomena and theory formalization. Using conceptual analysis, systems theory is applied as a framework to develop five principles for building and evaluating theories of well-being: a well-being system framework. The principles are then applied to evaluate two integrative well-being frameworks: the engine of well-being (Jayawickreme, Forgeard, & Seligman, 2012) and the four qualities of life (Veenhoven, 2000). The theoretical contribution of this thesis is an explanatory framework aiming to guide theory development by suggesting components that a theory requires to explain well-being. The well-being system framework aims to open new avenues for research using a systems theory approach to assist in developing comprehensive models of well-being.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Systems theory : background and terminology -- Chapter 2. A system framework for building theories of well-being -- Chapter 3. The engine of well-being : a critical evaluation -- Chapter 4. The four qualities of life : a critical evaluation -- Chapter 5. Discussion, limitations and future research -- Reference list -- Appendices.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 81-95

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology

Department, Centre or School

Department of Psychology

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Simon Boag


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