The Standard of Living (SOL) of people reflects a state of mind in which society has, and also a state of physical reality, by reference to the level of wealth, luxuries or comfort, material goods and necessities available to a certain social economical class, in a certain geographic area.
State of the Standard of living commonly includes the following factors:
- Income Level.
- Educational level.
- Literacy rate.
- Infant mortality rate.
- State of self worth of individuals.
- Quality and availability of education
- Quality and availability of employment.
- Class disparity.
- poverty rate.
- Quality and affordability of housing.
- Hours of work required to purchase necessities.
- Gross domestic product.
- Inflation rate.
- Amount of leisure time every year.
- Affordability or free access to quality healthcare.
- Incidence of disease.
- Cost of goods and services.
- National economic growth.
- Economical and political stability.
- Political and religious freedom.
- Environmental quality, climate and safety.
- Freedom of religion.
- Freedom of Slavery.
- The right to marry and the right to have a family.
- The right of single parent or joint adoption of a child.
- The right to be treated equally without consideration of sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, religion.
The standard of living is closely related to quality of life. A standard of living generally refers to objective oriented characteristics, though the quality of life is more intangible and subjective. The factors that make up a good quality of life for one individual may not necessarily be the same for someone else.
Factors referring to life sustenance could be determined by the indicators such as physical quality of life index and cost of living. Factors such as freedom over slavery, freedom of religion and state of self worth of individuals are difficult to be quantified, though it is also an important aspect of Standard of living.
Gross National Product (GNP), though considered as one of the main indicators of standard of living of citizens in a country, this indicator referrers only to economical aspects of living and cannot be considered as a proper indicator for standard of living. It is more than obvious when considering above given factors that Standard of living includes both social and economical considerations.
Recent studies have shown that both social and economical indicators are correlated highly with the level of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita.