Cross-Cultural Differences and Similarities in Human Value Instantiation

Paul Hanel, Gregory Maio, Ana Karla Silva Soares, Katia C. Vione, Gabriel Lins de Holanda Coelho, Valdiney Veloso Gouveia, Appasaheb C Patil, Shanmukh V Kamble, Antony S. R. Manstead

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Previous research found that the within-country variability of human values (e.g., equality and helpfulness) clearly outweighs between-country variability. Across three countries (Brazil, India, and the United Kingdom), the present research tested in student samples whether between-nation differences reside more in the behaviors used to concretely instantiate (i.e., exemplify or understand) values than in their importance as abstract ideals. In Study 1 (N = 630), we found several meaningful between-country differences in the behaviors that were used to concretely instantiate values, alongside high within-country variability. In Study 2 (N = 677), we found that participants were able to match instantiations back to the values from which they were derived, even if the behavior instantiations were spontaneously produced only by participants from another country or were created by us. Together, these results support the hypothesis that people in different nations can differ in the behaviors that are seen as typical as instantiations of values, while holding similar ideas about the abstract meaning of the values and their importance.
Original languageEnglish
Article number849
Number of pages13
JournalFrontiers in Psychology: Personality and Social Psychology
Issue numberMAY
Early online date29 May 2018
Publication statusPublished - 29 May 2018


  • Cross-cultural
  • Differences
  • Human values
  • Instantiation
  • Similarities
  • Value-behavior relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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