Cultural orientation in China: Differences across five generations of employees

Jun Ma, Zhonghui Hu, Malgorzata Goclowska

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Citations (SciVal)


Following recent shifts in economic models and family structure in China, younger generations of Chinese employees have been found to exhibit values and behaviors that are visibly different from those held and displayed by the cultural mainstream. To gain a better grasp of this phenomenon, we examined how cultural orientation (with a focus on vertical individualism and vertical collectivism) varies with age and tenure in a diverse sample of Chinese employees (N = 306). Our results revealed a negative association of both age and tenure with vertical individualism, and follow-up analyses showed that the biggest increase in vertical individualism occurred in the post-1990s generation of employees. The post-1990s generation also showed a visible decrease in horizontal collectivism, but this cultural orientation was not significantly associated with age or tenure. Limitations and implications for theory and practice are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)529 - 540
Number of pages12
JournalSocial Behavior and Personality
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2016


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