The interaction between individualism and wellbeing in predicting mortality: Survey of health ageing and retirement in Europe

Judy Okely, Alexander Weiss, Catharine Gale

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The link between greater wellbeing and longevity is well documented. The aim of the current study was to test whether this association is consistent across individualistic and collectivistic cultures. The sample consisted of 13,596 participants from 11 European countries, each of which was assigned an individualism score according to Hofstede, Hofstede and Minkov’s (2010) cultural dimension of individualism. We tested whether individualism moderated the cross-sectional association between wellbeing and self-rated health or the longitudinal association between wellbeing and mortality risk. Our analysis revealed a significant interaction between individualism and wellbeing such that the association between wellbeing and self-rated health or risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease was stronger in more individualistic countries. However, the interaction between wellbeing and individualism was not significant in analysis predicting all-cause mortality. Further prospective studies are needed to confirm our finding and to explore the factors responsible for this culturally dependent effect.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-11
JournalJournal of Behavioral Medicine
Volume41
Issue number1
Early online date15 Jul 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2018

Keywords

  • well being
  • individualism
  • longevity
  • self-rated health
  • cultural dimensions

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