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Open AccessArticle

The Impact of Road Construction on Subjective Well-Being in Communities in Madre de Dios, Peru

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Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, 1440 Canal St, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
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School of Public Health, University of Michigan, 1415 Washington Heights, Ann Arbor, MI 48109, USA
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School of Medicine, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1201 E Marshall St, Richmond, VA 23298, USA
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Tulane University School of Medicine, 1430 Tulane Ave, New Orleans, LA 70112, USA
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U.S. Naval Medical Research Unit No. 6, Callao, Callao 2, Peru
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School of Public Health and Administration, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Ave Honorio Delgado 430, San Martín de Porres, Lima 31, Peru
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Biomedical Engineering, Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú, Av. Universitaria 1801, San Miguel, Lima 32, Peru
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Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, Socinstrasse 57, 4051 Basel, Switzerland
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Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel, Petersplatz 1, 4001 Basel, Switzerland
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(6), 1271; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15061271
Received: 2 April 2018 / Revised: 9 June 2018 / Accepted: 11 June 2018 / Published: 15 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Section Global Health)
The interoceanic highway (IOH) in Madre de Dios, Peru has driven dramatic change in the Peruvian Amazon basin. We conducted a mixed methods study to examine the impact of these changes on the subjective well-being (SWB) of four communities on the IOH. Themes that emerged qualitatively included changing health threats, environmental degradation, and the impact of increased migration. To achieve a higher level of SWB, respondents emphasized the need for higher incomes, opportunities to learn new skills, and a better education for their children. Potential threats to SWB included marital problems and poorer health. Quantitative analyses suggested that social support and a sense of security impacted reported SWB scores based on life satisfaction, and the impact of income on life satisfaction was mediated by food security. Although long-term residents felt that specific determinants of SWB had both increased (food variety, transport and access to work) and decreased (access to natural resources and hunting), the majority reported that their lives had improved overall. Health had been affected by the IOH in both negative ways (increased dengue and road accidents) and positive ways (improved access to health services). Our results suggest that the rapidly-changing communities near the IOH link well-being to health, income, community, and the environment. View Full-Text
Keywords: well-being; Peru; environment; Latin America; mixed methodology well-being; Peru; environment; Latin America; mixed methodology
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Riley-Powell, A.R.; Lee, G.O.; Naik, N.S.; Jensen, K.E.; O’Neal, C.; Salmón-Mulanovich, G.; Hartinger, S.M.; Bausch, D.G.; Paz-Soldan, V.A. The Impact of Road Construction on Subjective Well-Being in Communities in Madre de Dios, Peru. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 1271.

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