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Article

Relations Among Higher Order Values Around the World

Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology. 2018. Vol. 49. No. 8. P. 1165-1182.
Rudnev M., Magun V., Schwartz S.

The circular structure of basic human values is the core element of the Schwartz value theory. The structure demonstrated high robustness across cultures. However, the specific correlations between values and the differences in these correlations across countries have received little attention. The current research investigated the within-country correlations between the four higher order values. We estimated the correlations with meta-analytical mixed-effects models based on 10 surveys, on different value instruments, and on data from 104 countries. Analyses revealed theoretically expected negative relations between openness to change and conservation values and between self-transcendence and self-enhancement values. More interestingly, openness to change and self-transcendence values related negatively with each other, as did conservation and self-enhancement. Openness to change and self-enhancement values related predominantly positively, as did conservation and self-transcendence values. Correlations between the adjacent values were weaker in more economically developed countries, revealing higher value complexity of these societies. These findings were consistent across multiple surveys and after controlling for levels of education and income inequality. We concluded that, across most countries, values tend to be organized predominantly in line with the Social versus Person Focus opposition, whereas the Growth versus Self-Protection opposition is pronounced only in more economically developed countries.