Home | News & Insights | 2014 | New Quality of Life survey reveals Cambridge workers have huge respect for each other but far less for the city’s transport system

New Quality of Life survey reveals Cambridge workers have huge respect for each other


A survey of over 4,000 Cambridge employees has revealed that 76 per cent believe people treat each other with respect while 66 per cent are happy with their work life balance. Perhaps not surprisingly in such a green city 89 per cent say they are satisfied with parks and open spaces. 


 The Quality of Life survey, commissioned by Cambridge Ahead, clearly showed that workers are happy with their employment prospects (80 per cent) and learning and development opportunities (76 per cent). 

It also highlighted that just 14 per cent of workers believe anti-social behaviour is a problem and just six per cent are worried about the fear of crime. 

However, 77 per cent were dissatisfied with the level of traffic in Cambridge (the highest level for any of the key areas explored in the survey). Interestingly, when it came to mode of transport, the number of men cycling to work on any given day during the middle of the week is nearly the same as those travelling to work by car (803 compared to 847). Despite the high numbers of cyclists, only 43 per cent are satisfied it is safe to travel in this way. 

When it came to public transport, train and bus travel fared very differently. Overall 48 per cent of workers are dissatisfied with bus services with the lack of frequency the biggest gripe. However, more than 70 per cent of employees are satisfied with the frequency of trains, although just 60 per cent of travellers were happy with weekday services. 

Housing was the second major concern of respondents with 76 per cent agreeing that housing is not affordable. 

Another key finding was a distinct gap between older and younger generations, with those aged 16-44 having much less sense of belonging to their neighbourhood. And while most generations feel Cambridge is the right size, more older people think Cambridge is too big while more younger people think the city is too small. 

The survey was conducted by RAND Europe, a not-for-profit organisation and member of Cambridge Ahead, the business and academic member group dedicated to the successful growth of Cambridge and its region in the long-term. All 31 

Cambridge Ahead members participated in the survey in what is one of the biggest worker-based surveys to date. 

Jane Paterson-Todd, CEO of Cambridge Ahead, said: “We commissioned this survey in order to understand the full extent of what workers feel about their quality of life and where Cambridge Ahead can prioritise its work to help resolve major issues. The survey confirms that transport and housing are significant problems that need to be addressed. 

“The high response rate shows the level of interest and concern these employees feel about their quality of life. There are lots of lessons for our members, and indeed other Cambridge organisations, to take away.” 

Download full press release here.



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Sarah Brereton, Director, Limewash
07796 583 223

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