Inglehart-Welzel's Traditional vs. Rational Index Revisited: A Comparison between China and the West

Asian Journal of Social Psychology, Forthcoming

52 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2012 Last revised: 28 Nov 2012

Date Written: November 22, 2012

Abstract

Inglehart’s “Traditional-Rational” Index” has been widely accepted as a way to summarize changes in values between agricultural and industrial societies. An empirical re-examination of the Index using the most recent World Values Survey data, however, suggests that it fails to represent the value profiles of mainland Chinese. I introduce a five-item measurement called “Confucian Index of interpersonal relations” to capture some salient values in Chinese culture and show that in China, Confucian values that govern interpersonal relations within one’s immediate social environment are not in conflict with support of democratic government and social liberal values such as tolerance and trust. The opposite is very much true in the rich West, where those who endorse “Confucian” values are less tolerant of social diversity and where Inglehart’s Index does make a lot of sense.

Keywords: Confucian tradition, Congruence theory, Cross-cultural comparison of values and attitudes, Traditional-rational Index, World Values Survey (WVS)

JEL Classification: A13, C52, J17

Suggested Citation

Gu, Man-Li, Inglehart-Welzel's Traditional vs. Rational Index Revisited: A Comparison between China and the West (November 22, 2012). Asian Journal of Social Psychology, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2179576 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2179576

Man-Li Gu (Contact Author)

Taylor's University ( email )

Jalan Taylor's
Kuala Lumpur, 47500
Malaysia

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
152
Abstract Views
1,120
rank
231,157
PlumX Metrics