May 22, 2019
Engineering for Rural Development
Satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the university city can influence the student’s decision to continue to build his/her life in the city, to return to the previous place of residence or move to live elsewhere. Thus, it also influences the future development of the university city, as educated inhabitants are an important resource for further development of the city. In order to examine students’ satisfaction with life in their host city the research was carried out at the Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies, which is located in Jelgava, the fourth biggest city of Latvia. In questionnaire survey students were asked to evaluate their satisfaction with overall life in the city, their current accommodation and various city’s social, infrastructure and environmental attributes as well as evaluate their sense of belonging to Jelgava city. The results revealed that overall satisfaction with life in Jelgava was rather average among students and lower compared with permanent inhabitants of Jelgava and the key drivers of students’ overall satisfaction with life in the city were the sense of belonging, satisfaction with current housing, educational facilities, noise level and cultural facilities. The highest level of satisfaction was with such attributes as educational facilities, green spaces, cleanliness, availability of retail shops, cultural facilities, public spaces and sports facilities, while moderate satisfaction was observed with the quality of the air, safety, the state of the streets and buildings and the noise level. At the same time the lowest satisfaction was observed with public transport, job opportunities and healthcare services. Half of the respondents felt belongingness to Jelgava and this sense was influenced by the students’ age, housing tenure and duration in the current residence. More than half of students expressed satisfaction with their residence and the most satisfied were the students, who lived in private houses, while the students from dormitories were the least satisfied with their housing conditions.