Although we were able to compile data from high quality, nationally representative data sets, there were some limitations of this approach. For instance, many of the outcomes came from different datasets and thus, we were unable to assess how different aspects of one domain relate or how different domains relate to one another. In addition, while we were able to compare groups of Americans at two distinct time points, we were unable to follow the same group of people over time to characterize changes in living well within individuals as they age. We are also expanding on the original measures to improve our understanding of American lives. We are administering a survey developed at the Stanford Center on Longevity and in collaboration with the Stanford Department of Psychology. The survey will capture the full spectrum of Americans by using a nationally representative survey panel. Conducting our own survey will advance the Sightlines project aims in four important ways:
- Understand how Healthy Living, Financial Security, and Social Engagement relate to one another.
- Determine what behaviors are most important for each domain. For instance, what matters most for Healthy Living: physical activity, sleep, diet, etc.?
- Follow the same people of different age groups annually to assess changes in behaviors as people enter different stages of life.
- Elaborate on the metrics we used in initial analyses by including additional survey questions that delve deeper into possible explanations.