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The circular structure of values: The case of China


Heim, Eva; Steinmetz, Holger; Zeigenfuse, Matthew D; Maercker, Andreas; Margraf, Juergen (2016). The circular structure of values: The case of China. International Journal of Psychology:Epub ahead of print.

Abstract

This study examined the circular structure of values in China. The circular structure is a central element of Schwartz value theory and visualises the idea that some values are similar while others conflict with one another. Whereas numerous studies addressed the question whether the circular structure of values can be generalised cross-culturally, results for China are inconclusive. In this paper, we argue that taking a closer look at China provides a challenge to the circular structure and allows for drawing conclusions regarding the limits versus generalizability of Schwartz' theory. For this purpose, we first conduct a re-analysis of Chinese data from a former meta-analysis (Study 1) and second, present results from a large study of 10,652 Chinese college students (Study 2). Results of Study 1 revealed that graphical representation of the circular structure matched theoretical expectations but five out of six samples showed relatively bad fit to the theorised structure. By contrast, data in Study 2 showed a good model fit. As an overall conclusion, the circular structure is well supported in the Chinese context, and small sample sizes in previous studies might have caused the imperfect match to the prototypical circular structure.

Abstract

This study examined the circular structure of values in China. The circular structure is a central element of Schwartz value theory and visualises the idea that some values are similar while others conflict with one another. Whereas numerous studies addressed the question whether the circular structure of values can be generalised cross-culturally, results for China are inconclusive. In this paper, we argue that taking a closer look at China provides a challenge to the circular structure and allows for drawing conclusions regarding the limits versus generalizability of Schwartz' theory. For this purpose, we first conduct a re-analysis of Chinese data from a former meta-analysis (Study 1) and second, present results from a large study of 10,652 Chinese college students (Study 2). Results of Study 1 revealed that graphical representation of the circular structure matched theoretical expectations but five out of six samples showed relatively bad fit to the theorised structure. By contrast, data in Study 2 showed a good model fit. As an overall conclusion, the circular structure is well supported in the Chinese context, and small sample sizes in previous studies might have caused the imperfect match to the prototypical circular structure.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Language:English
Date:2016
Deposited On:30 Nov 2016 16:00
Last Modified:30 Nov 2016 16:00
Publisher:Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
ISSN:0020-7594
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1002/ijop.12390
PubMed ID:27709607

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