An investigation into the cross-cultural equivalence of the personal wellbeing index

Lau, Anna L. D., Cummins, Robert A. and McPherson, Wenda 2005, An investigation into the cross-cultural equivalence of the personal wellbeing index, Social indicators research, vol. 72, no. 3, pp. 403-430, doi: 10.1007/s11205-004-0561-z.

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Title An investigation into the cross-cultural equivalence of the personal wellbeing index
Author(s) Lau, Anna L. D.
Cummins, Robert A.ORCID iD for Cummins, Robert A.
McPherson, Wenda
Journal name Social indicators research
Volume number 72
Issue number 3
Start page 403
End page 430
Total pages 28 p.
Publisher Springer-Verlag
Place of publication Dordrecht, The Netherlands
Publication date 2005-07
ISSN 0303-8300
Keyword(s) cross-cultural measurement
personal wellbeing index
quality of life
subjective wellbeing
Summary The Personal Wellbeing Index (PWI) is being developed for the cross-cultural measurement of subjective wellbeing (SWB). This paper reports the findings of its utility with the Hong Kong Chinese and Australian populations. An item on affect, ‘satisfaction with own happiness’ was also investigated to determine whether it should be added to the index. Three-hundred and sixty participants (180 per country), with equal representation from groups aged 18–35, 35–64 and 65 years and above, were recruited from each country. The PWI demonstrated good psychometric performance in terms of its reliability, validity and sensitivity, which are comparable in both countries. The item ‘satisfaction with own happiness’ was found to contribute significantly to the scale’s psychometric performance in Australia but not in Hong Kong. Cultural differences in the perception of the concepts ‘satisfaction’ and ‘happiness’ were suggested as an explanation for this finding. The PWI data are also consistent with homeostasis theory, which proposes that each person’s SWB level is maintained within a limited positive range. For the Australian population, their mean SWB level fell within the established Western range of 70–80, on a scale from 0 to 100. The Hong Kong population, however, fell below this range. Cultural response bias was identified as a plausible explanation for the differences between the Hong Kong and Australian samples.
Language eng
DOI 10.1007/s11205-004-0561-z
Field of Research 170113 Social and Community Psychology
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2005, Springer
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