Application of the Hope Theory to Understand Reconstruction Beliefs and Life Satisfaction Level among Residents following the Fukushima Disaster

Sakurai Ryo, Okuda Kana, Tsukahara Daisuke

Abstract


The Great Eastern Japan Earthquake struck in 2011, which had an enormous impact on society and lives in the northern part of the Japan (Tohoku region). The disaster also led to hydrogen explosion at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant (FDNP), resulting in leakage of radioactive substances that contaminated the surrounding area. The Fukushima population is highly stressed and lives under constant fear of radiation, in addition to losing neighbors to evacuations during the earthquakes and the tsunami. Yet, there is lack of research on the psychological state of Japanese earthquake survivors. The present study uses psychological variables to measure hope for understanding how these factors could explain beliefs toward reconstruction and life satisfaction level of the local residents in Miyakoji town of Fukushima Prefecture. The survey (n=223) showed that only a few residents (about 30%) believed in successful reconstruction. Regression analysis revealed that factors of hope such as pathway and agency thinking have an influence on respondents’ beliefs regarding reconstruction and their level of life satisfaction. Future outreach and supporting activities should target raising residents’ hope to increase their psychological well-being.


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22158/jar.v2n4p162

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Copyright (c) 2018 Sakurai Ryo, Okuda Kana, Tsukahara Daisuke

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