The construct of individuation: More complex in collectivist than in individualist cultures

Virginia S.Y. Kwan, Michael Harris Bond, Helen C. Boucher, Christina Maslach, Yiqun Gan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


The authors outline a strategy for introducing a Western psychological construct into a different culture. A series of three studies tested how the construct of individuation functions in a collectivist culture. It was hypothesized that the original one-factor model of individuation would not be sufficient to capture the meaning of individuating behaviors in a collectivist culture. Rather, a culture-specific model with two factors, namely, Taking the Lead and Seeking Attention, was expected. In Study 1, the two-factor model showed a better fit than the original one-factor model in a Chinese sample. In Study 2, replicating the original one-factor model in an individualistic culture eliminated an explanation for the obtained two-factor model based on a methodological artifact. In Study 3, the authors examined the nomological network of the two types of individuation and determined whether the imported construct of individuation changes meanings in the new culture.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)300-310
Number of pages11
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Bulletin
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2002
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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