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Cross-Cultural Values: A Meta-Analysis of Major Quantitative Studies in the Last Decade (2010–2020)

Department of Humanitarian and Disaster Leadership, School of Social Science and Education, Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL 60187, USA
Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, IUPUI, Indianapolis, IN 46234, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
The first and second authors contributed equally to this paper.
Religions 2020, 11(8), 396;
Original submission received: 30 May 2020 / Revised: 30 June 2020 / Accepted: 9 July 2020 / Published: 31 July 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Global Understandings of Religiosity and Generosity)


Since 2010, scholars have made major contributions to cross-cultural research, especially regarding similarities and differences across world regions and countries in people’s values, beliefs, and morality. This paper accumulates and analyzes extant multi-national and quantitative studies of these facets of global culture. The paper begins with a summary of the modern history of cross-cultural research, then systematically reviews major empirical studies published since 2010, and next analyzes extant approaches to interpret how the constructs of belief, morality, and values have been theorized and operationalized. The analysis reveals that the field of cross-cultural studies remains dominated by Western approaches, especially studies developed and deployed from the United States and Western Europe. While numerous surveys have been translated and employed for data collection in countries beyond the U.S. and Western Europe, several countries remain under-studied, and the field lacks approaches that were developed within the countries of interest. The paper concludes by outlining future directions for the study of cross-cultural research. To progress from the colonialist past embedded within cross-cultural research, in which scholars from the U.S. and Western Europe export research tools to other world regions, the field needs to expand to include studies locally developed and deployed within more countries and world regions.

1. Introduction

This paper offers a macro picture of contemporary cross-cultural studies worldwide with quantitative approaches. It critically reviews the history of cross-cultural research since the last century. Based on the existing methodological theories, the paper constructs a systematic framework with a focus on the cultural elements of values, beliefs, and morality. It examines Western, particularly United States, paradigms for the current quantitative measurements of world cultures. The paper presents results of a systematic literature review that investigates answers to the following two research questions: (1) What are the major contemporary contributions to cross-cultural, quantitative studies of beliefs, morality, and values? and (2) What have been the major geographical emphases of these studies, in terms of data collection localities and regions of study development? This analysis of extant publications since 2010 reveals that quantitative cross-cultural research remains heavily dominated by research developed within Western Europe and the United States, and then exported to other countries and world regions. As Henrich et al. (2010) famously wrote, while most people in the world are not WEIRD (white, educated, industrialist, rich, and democratic), most studies are. Despite major advancements in the internationalization of social science generally, only a small fraction of cross-cultural research originates outside of Western Europe and the United States. Major studies of cross-cultural values, beliefs, and morality have expanded to include data collected from a number of formerly under-studied countries and world regions. Yet, the theories, frameworks, research designs, data collection implementations, analyses, and interpretations are still predominantly Western. Therefore, future directions of cross-cultural studies need to be developed and deployed by scholars steeped in the local knowledge of under-studied countries and world regions.
To advance the field beyond its colonialist roots, this paper provides readers with knowledge from a broad range of backgrounds with an organized understanding of the progress in the field of cross-cultural studies over the recent past, in order to better understand what is needed in the near future. This proceeds in a series of steps. First, the historical section summarizes several key long-term threads in the modern history of cross-cultural study in order to summarize the trajectories of major research paradigms, including ongoing debates between scholars that shaped the most widely-used surveys. Second, the methods employed to assemble this paper’s sample of publications is described, including the inclusion and exclusion criteria that form the boundaries of this systematic review. Third, the results section begins with an overview of the major quantitative studies of culture in the last decade (2010–2020). The analysis of these studies and their major findings includes detailing the geographical scope of data and research design. The next section of the results groups extant publications within three major constructs—beliefs, morality, and values—in order to address what a decade of studies collected across hundreds of countries have accumulated about larger theoretical conceptualizations, definitions, and typical approaches to operationalization. Fourth, the discussion identifies fruitful avenues for future research.

1.1. History of Cross-Cultural Studies

1.1.1. Major Cultural Theories (1927–1990)

This overview of the history of cross-cultural studies begins first with major theories of culture. Seminally, Kohlberg (1927–1987), who founded the field of moral psychology (e.g., Kohlberg 1963a, 1963b, 1971, 1973a, 1973b, 1976; Kohlberg and Hersh 1977; Kohlberg and Kramer 1969), furthered the work of Piaget with an elaborate theory of moral development that highlighted justice as the central and universal pillar of morality (Krewer 1997). Functionally, this offered a monist or singular conception of human morality (Graham et al. 2012, p. 6). Explicitly appealing to Kant’s categorical imperative and Rawls’ “veil of ignorance” Kohlberg posited role-taking, an ability to see through the eyes of others, as the mechanism leading to just decision-making (Kohlberg 1971). Hume famously articulated the conflict between reason and sentiments in the moral sphere; and sided himself with sentiment (also known as “emotivism”) (Hume 2004). Kohlberg, by contrast charted a “cognitivist” course for moral psychology, in which: “moral qualities are objective and universal qualities of events in the world and can be apprehended by means of reason through a ‘chain of argument and induction’” (Shweder and Haidt 1993, p. 361). However, cross-cultural empirical studies produced ambiguous results, with some confirming the sequences and demonstrating a universal morality across cultures, and others finding great variance in concepts such as justice across cultures (Kohlberg and Hersh 1977).
Gilligan (1982) expanded on Kohlberg’s work by proposing a pluralist moral framework with two, rather than one, central ethical principle (a “monist” framework). Her research suggested that boys and girls often discussed different modes of moral reasoning: justice and rights for boys (consistent with Kohlberg), but also care and response for girls (differing from Kohlberg). She viewed these as the two modes of moral reasoning interacting in an individual’s moral development. Kohlberg et al. (1983) later agreed with Gilligan.
Subsequently, Shweder (1990) (Shweder et al. 1997) made two additional contributions. First, based on his cultural anthropological research in India, he argued for a broader and more pluralistic moral framework that would incorporate non-Western concerns. Specifically, he proposed three “codes,” or types of “moral discourse” that would become “autonomy” (akin to Kohlberg’s justice), “community” (overlapping some with Gilligan’s care) and “divinity” (a novel category). He later influenced Haidt’s thinking with whom he published a 1993 article on moral pluralism (Shweder and Haidt 1993). Haidt later became a central scholar in the development of Moral Foundations Theory, which argues for at least five moral foundations (e.g., Haidt 2013a, 2013b; Haidt and Graham 2007, 2009; Haidt et al. 2009; Haidt and Joseph 2004, 2011; Haidt et al. 1993). This pluralist view, with multiple cultural variables, has become a standard in quantitative research on culture—be it through the Kohlberg lineage or through the Hofstede lineage (see below). Second, Shweder (1990) defended moral realism in an article that was appropriately titled: “In Defense of Moral Realism.” Contra Gabennesch (1990), Shweder did not see “all social formations as devoid of objective justification” (p. 2064). Rather, he suggested that “most social formations, even those that vary from culture to culture (e.g., arranged marriage in India vs. love marriage in the United States) may be derived from natural moral laws” (p. 2066). Thus, Shweder joined Kohlberg in undergirding the universalistic, moral realist assumptions within subsequent lineages of quantitative, cross-cultural research throughout the late 20th and early 21st centuries.

1.1.2. Major Cross-Cultural Studies (1966–2009)

The quantitative study of cross-cultural similarity and difference began to blossom in the 1960s and 70s (e.g., Cesa-Bianchi 1966; Frijda and Jahoda 1966). The International Journal of Psychology was founded in 1966 to provide a place for the publication of comparative studies to better understand human behavior. Desired research would “exploit the variables which nature has in differences of ecology, culture and language” (Drever 1966, p. 1). For example, the first volume included articles such as “The Development of Social Attitudes as Studied in Two Cross-Cultural Research Projects” and “On the Scope and Methods of Cross-Cultural Research.” A few years later in 1970, the Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology was founded, with a stated desire to partner with the International Journal of Psychology and several other publications focused on cross-cultural research. The “Editor’s Greeting” for the inaugural issue summarized the purpose of the journal as follows: “to reduce the effort one must expend in the search for cross-cultural research articles” and “to stimulate and exploit an explicitly international approach to behavioral research” (Lonner 1970, p. iii). The journal’s vision was interdisciplinary and inter-cultural, rather than intra-cultural research.
In this same era, a number of scholars produced important works in cross-cultural studies. Geertz (1973) championed a semiotic and anthropological approach to understanding culture. Thick ethnographic descriptions would enable understanding of the difference, for example, between a blink and a wink. Geertz utilized an emic approach to knowledge: the attempt to understand a social phenomenon from within its own cultural logics and referents (not based on external frameworks). In the same year, Rokeach (1973) published The Nature of Human Values, which divided values between terminal and instrumental types (specifying 18 of each value-type). The historical reach of Rokeach is deep, yet contemporary investigations have waned (e.g., Bigoness and Blakely 1996; Garcia et al. 2014; Giacomino et al. 2011; Gorsuch 1980; Hanke and Vauclair 2016; Musser and Orke 1992; Rokeach 1968, 1973; Schiffman et al. 1981; Vauclair et al. 2011). In summary, Rokeach’s influence is instrumental, insofar as he inspired the subsequent leading cross-cultural research (Hanke and Vauclair 2016), and research directly utilizing the Rokeach Value Survey has appeared only infrequently over the last several decades.
As Kohlberg was one of the key figures in the development of theories of culture, Hofstede (1928–2020) was a pioneer in the quantitative measure of culture (e.g., Hofstede 1980a, 1980b, 1981, 1983, 1997, 2002, 2006; Carraher 2003). He surveyed 116,000+ IBM employees across 40 countries and 20 languages from 1967–1973. The early results of this research, published in 1980, suggested four dimensions of human culture: power distance, uncertainty avoidance, individualism, and masculinity. These four dimensions would become central components of the European Values Survey and the related World Values Survey, which began in 1980 (e.g., Aarts et al. 2008). Taras et al. (2009) describe Hofstede’s publication as the inflection point after which “we experienced an explosion of interest in the issue of culture measurement” (p. 357). Notably, this movement was etic in orientation—seeking universal measures that could define and explain culture in any time or place (Baskerville 2003). In that sense, Hofstede was consistent with Kohlberg and Shweder as an early shaper of the field.
An additional dimension, long- versus short-term orientation (originally labelled “Confucian Work Dynamism”) was added to Hofstede’s four dimensions (e.g., Minkov and Hofstede 2012a) due to research by The Chinese Culture Connection (1987). They wrote, “the animating purpose of this research was to look for dimensions of values by creating an Eastern instrument based on the Chinese tradition” (p. 155). In subsequent writing, Hofstede (1997) acknowledged the cultural bias of Western scholars, himself included, as blinding them to the possibility of this dimension in their prior study. However, the Chinese Culture Connection did not disagree with the search for cultural universals. Rather, they sought universal variables “derivable from a variety of cultural perspectives” by positioning the research (design, instrument, and analysis) in its cultural context (p. 155). In the same year as The Chinese Culture Connection’s paper, Schwartz and Bilsky (1987) also searched for universal elements, specifically in the domain of values, of human culture. They theorized three “universal requirements” related to values: “biological needs,” “interactional requirements for interpersonal coordination,” and “societal demands for group welfare and survival” (p. 550). In addition, they made the theoretical assumption that values are “cognitive representations” of these three universals. Therefore, Schwartz values theory falls squarely in both the universalist (e.g., Rokeach, Hofstede) and cognitivist (e.g., Kohlberg) traditions.
Lamenting Western bias in cross-cultural research has historically been a popular critical approach. This bias has been identified in many forms, including researcher backgrounds, theoretical approach, methods (particularly sampling procedures), and topics of study. For example, the validity and reliability of Western instruments in Non-Western countries is criticized by Sinha (2003) in his analysis of the indigenization of Indian psychology. Cheung et al. (1996) added a sixth factor in the Big Five personality models taking into account Chinese tradition. Ho (1998) wrote that individualistic research methods do not translate to the social realities of other countries. For decades, researchers advocated for methods that integrate diverging perspectives, amplify indigenous approaches and look beyond popular Western topics, yet progress was slow.
Around the turn of the 21st century, emerging methodological references, specifically in cultural psychology, became increasingly precise in training cross-cultural researchers against the following errors: (1) equating social differences to cross-cultural differences; (2) uncritically rejecting cognitive cross-cultural differences while upholding social ones; (3) lack of attention to equivalence and bias in cross-cultural sampling procedures with possible confounding of results; (4) reliance on convenience or small samples do not reveal underlying constructs; (5) the representativeness of a sample, indicating what populations of a country can be compared based on the sampling scheme; and (6) the interpretation paradox, which describes how cultural distance makes it difficult to explain the results found in research (Van de Vijver and Leung 2000).
For further review of the history and development of the study of culture, readers may also be interested in several related literature reviews (Erez and Gati 2004; Taras et al. 2009, 2010; Sullivan and Cottone 2010; Dickson et al. 2012; Shockley et al. 2017), meta-analyses (Panda and Gupta 2004; Vauclair et al. 2011; Boer and Fischer 2013), historical overviews (Berry et al. 1997), and a range of studies (e.g., Esmer and Pettersson 2007; Gelfand et al. 2006; Gibbs et al. 2007; Miller 2002, 2005; Minkov 2008; Minkov and Blagoev 2009; Minkov et al. 2015; Miyamoto 2013; Owe et al. 2013; Sarala and Vaara 2010; Schimmack et al. 2005; Franke and Richey 2010; Shao et al. 2010; Stankov 2011; Stankov and Lee 2008; Stankov et al. 2014; Stephan and Uhlaner 2010; Toh and Leonardelli 2012; Thalmayer and Saucier 2014; Vignoles et al. 2018; Yates et al. 2010; Yu 2015; Zou et al. 2009). In addition, these journal special issues include articles with more information: (1) The Value of Values in Cross-cultural Research in the Journal of Cross-cultural Psychology (2011; volume 42, issue 4); and (2) Cross-cultural value mismatch in the International Journal of Psychology (e.g., Aumann and Titzmann 2018; Bossong and Keller 2018; Wu et al. 2018; Greenfield 2018; Glazer et al. 2018).

2. Methods

In order to answer this paper’s research questions, the subsequent analysis is based upon a systematic literature review of major contributions to cross-cultural studies since 2010, analyzed by geographies. According to Fink (2005) and Okoli (2015), a systematic literature review needs to be comprehensive in its scope by attending to relevant publications and following a describable methodological approach that explicitly states the procedures used to construct the database of publications, facilitating reproducibility of the review. In accordance, this article evaluates major empirical research published in peer-reviewed journals, cataloged in major publication databases, and published since 2010. The keywords used to construct the sample of included publications were the following: values, beliefs, morality (and various iterations of these concepts, such as moral values). Within this set of relevant publications, inclusion as cross-cultural studies was based on the following criteria: (a) presented empirical data, (b) included relatively large sample sizes, and (c) compared people living in more than one culture, typically at least two nation-states (countries) or world regions.

2.1. Discovery Phase

An initial round of discovery searching employing these inclusion criteria within expansive publication databases (e.g., EBSCO, Google Scholar) returned several books, book chapters, and journal articles that were relevant for the keywords (e.g., Alexandra et al. 2017; AU et al. 2010; Barros et al. 2018; Berkín 2018; Boer and Fischer 2013; Brown et al. 2015; Bye et al. 2011; Cho and Kim 2013; Cleveland et al. 2011; Croucher 2011; de Mooij and Beniflah 2017; De Raad et al. 2016; Dickson et al. 2012; Dogruel et al. 2013; Döring et al. 2015; Erez and Gati 2004; Garcia et al. 2014; Gorlova et al. 2012; Grönlund 2013; Grönlund et al. 2011; Guerra and Giner-Sorolla 2010; Henrich et al. 2010; Hong 2015; Imada and Yussen 2012; Jackson 2011; Jaskyte 2016; Kaptan et al. 2013; Karadağ and Akgün 2016; Kasser 2011; Knafo et al. 2011; Kostina et al. 2015; Laroche et al. 2014; Maltseva 2014; Matondo 2012; Mayer and Träuble 2015; Milfont et al. 2010; Panda and Gupta 2004; Park et al. 2017; Pasha-Zaidi et al. 2019; Pleysier et al. 2011; Purzycki et al. 2016; Roccas and Sagiv 2017; Schiefer et al. 2010; Shockley et al. 2017; Stankov 2016; Sullivan and Cottone 2010; Tàpie and Moya 2012; Taras et al. 2009; Thornberg and Oğuz 2016; Vauclair and Fischer 2011; Vauclair et al. 2011; Villatoro et al. 2014; Watkins 2010; Yang 2015; Yeganeh and May 2011; Zhang and Li 2015). This discovery search defined the relevant keywords, identified major studies and scholars contributing to the field, and revealed typical publication sources.

2.2. Systematic Phase

Drawing upon systematic search methods (e.g., Moher et al. 2015; Okoli 2015; Okoli and Schabram 2010; Page et al. 2018; Shamseer et al. 2015), the second phase entailed a systematic review of contemporary sources as described below. A review of this initial sample of publications revealed that the major studies were nearly entirely quantitative and heavily published within a subset of six highly relevant journals: (1) Cross Cultural Research, (2) Personality and Individual Differences, (3) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, (4) International Journal of Psychology, (5) Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, and (6) Journal of International Management. Thus, the subsequent systematic stage of searching focused heavily on these peer-review journal publication sources and sifted based on keywords and geographic scope.
Additionally, included studies primarily compare aspects of culture between countries. Therefore, studies focusing solely on a single country (U.S.) or world region (U.S. and Western Europe) were excluded (e.g., Christen 2018), as were studies of multiple countries that focused exclusively on other topics, such as solely studying political barometers (e.g., Global Barometer Surveys 2020) or public opinion research that did not also engage questions regarding values, beliefs, or morality (e.g., World Association of Public Opinion Research 2020; Pew Global Attitudes and Trends 2020). Additionally, the emphasis in this paper is on macro-level and meso-level approaches to culture, not micro-level focus on individual personality characterizes. Thus, studies investigating cross-cultural variance in the Big 5 Personality (or Big 6, Big 2, and so on) traits were also excluded from this analysis (e.g., Alper and Yilmaz 2019; Minkov et al. 2019). While this study reports on differences between countries, it is important to note that multiple and large individual and cultural differences within countries are found in our included studies as well. For example, Stankov (2011) found that individual differences dominated the variance found in a study of cultures and norms. Theoretically, these types of differences are explained in a framework by Zou et al. (2009), which proposes that behavior is shaped by two mechanisms—both inwardly facing personal beliefs, shaped by personality and preferences, and outwardly facing consensual beliefs, shaped by participation within a culture. Ever-changing migration and population diversity within societies also contribute to the multi-faceted, dynamic analysis necessary to understand the interactive cultural processes of a given geography, as examined in Greenfield (2018).
Combining these criteria, Table 1 lists the highly cited studies that repeatedly meet the inclusion criteria, including the following list of surveys and their respective publication citations.
Since the focus is on contemporary publications in the last decade, studies that originated before 2010 were included if a number of current publications continued to analyze the study’s data within the 2010–2020 focus (e.g., WVS, ESS, EVS). However, studies that were primarily investigated prior to 2010, without numerous contemporary analyses were excluded. Specifically, the Rokeach Value Survey was excluded (such as: Rokeach 1968, 1973; Gorsuch 1980; Musser and Orke 1992; Bigoness and Blakely 1996; Giacomino et al. 2011; Vauclair et al. 2011; Garcia et al. 2014; Hanke and Vauclair 2016). Additionally, we engaged screens for robustness and significance of findings, thus the analysis focuses especially on studies with large enough sample-sizes within each country to produce reliable data, hence why some studies are emphasized more.

2.3. Publication Database

Combined, these inclusion and exclusion criteria returned a total of 178 studies published within the decade of 2010–2020: 144 journal articles, nine books, nine chapters, seven reports, five doctoral dissertations, three conference papers, and one working paper. Of the 144 included peer-reviewed articles, the journals with more than two publications included are: Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology (35), Journal of World Business (15), Cross-Cultural Research (5), Personality and Individual Differences (5), Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (4), Current Psychology (3), International Journal of Psychology (3), Journal of Moral Education (3). In terms of the year of publication, attention waxes and wanes throughout the decade, overall remaining high (Figure 1).

3. Results

The following section provides descriptions of the surveys covered in this meta-analysis, per the inclusion criteria described in the methods section above.

3.1. Descriptions of Included Studies

This descriptive section does not yet address the analytical findings (see Section 3.2. Analysis of Major Constructs and Section 3.3 Analysis of Geographies sections below). First, the goal of the next section is to provide a basic overview of the included surveys: who was involved, their timing, geographies, and topics, roughly in chronological order.

3.1.1. World Values Survey (WVS, CVSCALE, EVS)

Hofstede’s Cultural Values Scale is the beginning point for this analysis (e.g., Fernandez et al. 1997; Hofstede 2011; Hofstede and Fink 2007; Hofstede 2001; McSweeney 2002; Nakata 2009; Signorini et al. 2009; Wu 2006). As discussed above, his work served as the basis of the European Values Study (EVS), which quickly expanded into the World Values Survey (WVS). The first wave of the EVS formed part of the data for the first wave of the WVS, which took place from 1981–1984. The shift from a European to a global focus is described on the website for the World Values Survey Association (WVSA): “Due to the European origin of the project, the early waves of the WVS were Eurocentric in emphasis, with little representation in Africa and South-East Asia. To expand, the WVS adopted a decentralized structure in which social scientists from countries throughout the world participated in the design, execution and analysis of the data, and in publication of findings.” The WVS would go on to conduct seven waves (see Table 1 for dates). As of 2018, Inglehart identified 358 WVS surveys in 105 countries with over 90 percent of the world’s population (Inglehart 2018, p. xvii). Furthermore, the WVSA, headquartered in Vienna, Austria, plans to conduct future waves every five years. Table 2 details the geographies of each WVS wave.
Ingelhart and Welzel used factor analysis on data from the WVS and EVS waves two, three, and four to validate the importance of two spectra for cross-cultural comparison: (1) traditional vs. secular-rational authority; and (2) survival vs. self-expression (Inglehart and Welzel 2010). In addition, they have created “Inglehart-Welzel Cultural Maps” using scatter plots for data from each of the six waves of the WVS. The most recent version of their cultural map, shown in Figure 2 below, posits nine cultural groupings: African-Islamic, Baltic, Catholic Europe, Confucian, English Speaking, Latin America, Orthodox, Protestant Europe and South Asia (Inglehart 2018, p. 46).

3.1.2. Schwartz Values Survey (SVS)

The second major cultural research project analyzed here is the Schwartz Value Survey (SVS) (e.g., Schwartz 1994, 2003; Schwartz and Bilsky 1987; Schwartz et al. 2000). Schwartz grounded his research on the centrality of the importance of values for understanding human behavior with the psychological theory of Rokeach (1973) and has similarities with WVS (Dobewall and Strack 2014). He defined values as “the criteria people use to elect and justify actions and to evaluate people (including the self) and events…rather than as qualities inherent in objects” (Schwartz 1992, p. 1). The SVS tests for 10 different human values: benevolence, universalism, self-direction, stimulation, hedonism, achievement, power, security, conformity and tradition. The ten values can be categorized in a four-part typology of self-transcendence, openness to change, self-enhancement, and conservation. Equally important, the survey results suggested a nearly universally discernible structure of values: a circular arrangement with tension or opposition between values arrayed across from one another (Schwartz 2016, p. 68).
One of the prominent uses of the SVS was the European Social Survey, which utilized it in 71 nationally representative surveys administered in 32 countries (Vaisey and Miles 2014). Yet, scholars noted significant differences in results between societies. Though the findings from 200+ samples in 60+ countries largely supported the validity of the Schwartz values and their structure (circular and oppositional), 5 percent of the samples “deviated considerably” from the theory (Schwartz et al. 2001, p. 519). Moreover, deviation was concentrated in rural areas and less developed countries (including sub-Saharan Africa, India and Malaysia).

3.1.3. Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ)

Additionally, Schwartz worked on a qualitatively different survey instrument to further explore the universality of value structures. He described the intent behind this new instrument, the Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ), as seeking to identify values that are less demanding of abstract thought, as he was concerned abstract questions catered to educated, Western school contexts (Schwartz et al. 2001). Thus, the PVQ uses more concrete ideas to test for the same 10 values and the structural relationships as the SVS. Table 3 shows all uses of the PVQ during the decade of 2010–2020 for comparative cultural research (i.e., two or more countries) discovered via key-word search in Google Scholar (“Portrait Value Questionnaire” and “cross-cultural”) and snowball methodology.
In addition to this list, a version of the PVQ (PVQ21) has been a regular component of the European Social Survey; and 10 items adapted from the PVQ were included in waves five and six of the World Values Survey (Rudnev et al. 2018). As its inclusion in these two surveys and the data in Table 3 show, the PVQ has been frequently used in the West but is expanding in other geographies (principally via ten questions included in the WVS).

3.1.4. Social Axioms Survey (SAS)

Leung et al. (2002) introduced the Social Axioms Survey (SAS) (e.g., Leung et al. 2011; Leung and Bond 2008; Gari et al. 2009). Their original paper probed social axioms in five cultures: Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, the United States, and Venezuela. Their findings suggested at least four and possibly five “pancultural” dimensions of culture: cynicism, reward for application, social complexity, spirituality, and possibly fate control. The initial research covered individualistic and collectivist cultures, as well as Buddhist, Catholic, and Protestant cultures. Subsequently, SAS research progressed in a number of noteworthy ways. First, Leung et al. (2012) deployed a refined version, the SAS.II. Second, various studies further evidenced the five-factor model. For example, research in 11 countries (Leung et al. 2012) and 23 countries (Malham and Saucier 2014) supported the five-factor model. Relatedly, the SAS was used as part of the Survey of World Views (SWV), discussed below. Lastly, research suggests further dimensions of social axioms. For example, Różycka-Tran et al. (2015), based on research in 37 countries, proposed “belief in a zero-sum game” or BZSG as an additional belief dimension within social axioms.

3.1.5. Global Leadership and Organizational Behavioral Effectiveness (GLOBE)

The year 2004 was important for quantitative, cross-cultural studies: two major studies began that have and continue to shape understanding of human culture: GLOBE and Moral Foundations. The Global Leadership and Organizational Behavioral Effectiveness (GLOBE) research project has a number of theoretical bases, including leadership theory, strategic contingency theory, McClelland’s achievement theory and Hofstede’s theory of culture (House and Hanges 2004; Brewer and Venaik 2010, 2011; Venaik and Brewer 2010; House 2004; House et al. 1999, 2002; Javidan et al. 2006; Smith 2006; Tung and Verbeke 2010; Waldman et al. 2006). This study has had three major waves to date and is presently engaged in its fourth data-collection cycle. Wave one, in 2004, was a quantitative study of 17,000+ managers from 62 societies. The theoretical development and empirical results suggested nine dimensions of culture: performance orientation, assertiveness, future orientation, humane orientation, institutional collectivism, gender egalitarianism, power distance, uncertainty avoidance. The second wave, conducted in 2007, employed qualitative methodology in 24 societies. In 2014, scholars conducted a third GLOBE study. This included quantitative research with 1000+ CEOs and 5000+ senior managers; it also included qualitative study from interviews of a sample of the CEOs in each country. The geographic coverage of these waves is detailed in Table 4 below.

3.1.6. Moral Foundations Questionnaire (MFQ/MFT)

Moral Foundations Theory (MFT) began with a paper by Haidt and Joseph (2004) that theorized four “moral modules”: hierarch, purity, reciprocity, and suffering. This theory followed the universalistic line of Kohlberg and explicitly built from the three moral languages (autonomy, community, and divinity) of Shweder (1990) and the four relational models (communal sharing, authority ranking, equality matching, and market pricing) of Fiske (1992). Subsequently, Haidt and Graham (2007) posited five moral foundations: care/harm, fairness/cheating, loyalty/betrayal, authority subversion, sanctity/degradation. Work on an additional foundation, liberty/oppression, was part of Iyer et al. (2012); and other foundations such as honesty/deception or efficiency/waste have been suggested (Simpson 2017). Graham et al. (2012) specified that MFT rests on four claims or assumptions: (a) nativism—there is an innate draft of the moral mind of every human; (b) cultural learning—the original draft is edited as a person develops in their particular culture; (c) intuitionism—intuitions precede strategic reasoning; and (d) pluralism. In addition, Vaisey and Miles (2014) noted that MFT is focused on moral prohibitions (or “bright lines”) as opposed to the more commonly studied topic of moral goods (or “bright lights”). Graham et al. (2011) developed the Moral Foundations Questionnaire (MFQ) to standardize operationalization of MFT in research. The MFQ was mostly developed, and much of this research is located in Western contexts (see the summary of related empirical research in Graham et al. 2012). Increasingly, MFT is utilized in more diverse geographies. Table 5 lists some of the empirical studies using MFT beyond Western settings.

3.1.7. Survey of World Views (SWV)

The Survey of World Views (SWV) is an amalgamation of questions from 17 literatures and questionnaires: including: GLOBE, SVS, SAS, MFQ, I-C, the Big Six, and the Duke Religion Index (Saucier et al. 2015, Table 3, p. 64). The central focus is a shared query of cross-cultural research: “in what variables does one find greater or lesser between-population difference?” (Saucier et al. 2015, p. 55). The survey was administered in 2012 to 8883 university students from 33 countries via the Internet, with a total of 6938 people completing the entire survey (Stankov and Lee 2016b, p. 58). This initiative specifically sought to correct prior efforts by achieving higher representation from the global south. The geographic coverage of the survey is detailed in Table 6 below.

3.2. Analysis of Major Constructs

Based on these extant studies, cross-cultural knowledge can be grouped into three primary constructs: (1) beliefs, defined as propositions or perceptions of a relationship between two objects (Katz 1960; Bem 1970; Bar-Tal 1990; as cited in Leung et al. 2002); (2) morality, defined as the normative aspects of social life—how people “ought to relate to one another” both at the individual and group level (Turiel 1983, p. 3; Gert 2017; Singer 1979; Haidt and Kesebir 2010; as cited in Graham et al. 2011); and (3) values, the general goals and criteria that people use to guide toward a desired state of being (Rokeach 1973).
In the examples that follow, the words belief, morality, and values are constructed at times distinctly, while at other times they are understood integratively, even operationalized with the same variable. The patterns of contemporary studies reflect a trajectory toward integration. Contemporary studies are typically less interested in demonstrating distinctions between belief, morality, and values than identifying which variable(s) is informative about another topic. For example, Haidt (2013a) studied how morality influences politics, while Daniel and colleagues (2015) investigated how values interact with helping behavior. The following sections first describe studies with distinct constructs of belief, morality, and values, and then summarize integrative studies. Due to growing integration of constructs, it is increasingly important to specify which and how dimensions of cross-cultural study are most relevant to the research questions (Taras et al. 2009, 2010). This begins with first understanding each construct in isolation.

3.2.1. Values

The majority of cross-cultural, empirical studies from 2010 to 2020 attend to values. Understood as the “bright lights” of culture, values can encompass nearly all aspects of life, and are known as shared notions of what is good, correct, and desirable (Vaisey and Miles 2014). They operate both for individuals and collectivities across situations, affecting how people perceive the world, form preferences, and act within it (Knafo et al. 2011; Vaisey and Miles 2014). Examples of studies investigating values include: Maseland and van Hoorn (2010); Dirilen-Gümüş and Sümer (2013); Gouveia et al. (2002); Halman et al. (1993); Moor (1995); Morris (2014).
Schwartz Values Survey (SVS). Based upon studies of nationally representative samples across the world, the Schwartz model of values is summarized in ten values: universalism, benevolence, conformity, tradition security, power, achievement, hedonism, stimulation, and self-direction. These values are further grouped into the dimensions of self-transcendence versus self-enhancement, and openness to change versus conservation. Schwartz collected data on thousands of individuals from 70 countries to identify both the structure and content of values (Schwartz 2004, 2011a).
Using SVS measures, Vauclair et al. (2011) used data on teachers (66 countries) and students (55 countries) to validate the structure of Schwartz values at the level of culture and to propose a new value type: self-fulfilled connectedness. Vauclair et al. (2015) studied four collectivist countries (Brazil, Japan, Philippines, and Turkey) and four individualistic countries (Finland, Germany, New Zealand, and the U.K.). The study found that moral judgments were more stringent in “conservation cultures” than in “openness to change cultures” (Vauclair et al. 2015). However, this relationship only appeared from culture to individual: a culturally prescribed value correlated with individual moral attitude; but openness to change or conservation at the individual level did not corelate with individual moral attitudes. In addition, this study exemplifies the difficulty of cross-cultural research vis-à-vis positionality. Specifically, the authors classify suicide, euthanasia, prostitution, divorce, and abortion as “personal and sexual issues” and apparently view them as “behavior [that] does not cause any evident harm” (pp. 213, 217), a culturally positioned delineation between what is harmful to others and what is only an issue of personal morality.
Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ). This instrument was designed with global cross-cultural research in mind. Much of the research utilizing the PVQ takes place in Western contexts (particularly Europe). An additional factor for our paper, much of its use is not comparative across cultures. For example, Simón et al. (2017) find that only 13 out of 58 studies using the PVQ from 2007–2014 are “cross-cultural.” Moreover, of these cross-cultural studies, only one involved comparison of non-Western geographies: Bender and Chasiotis (2011).
However, geographic expansion is expanding. For example, Liem et al. (2011) found all ten first order and all four second order values in samples from Australia, Indonesia, Philippines, and Singapore. Plus, Stanley et al. (2015) studied prospective teachers from China, Germany, Vietnam, and the U.S. Their results using the PVQ are consistent with much cross-cultural research. The Eastern cultures of China and Vietnam tend more to preferences for the values of Conformity, Achievement, Power, and Security. The Western cultures of America and Germany tend more to the preferences for the values of Self-Direction and Benevolence. “In general Eastern culture tends more toward values of conservatism and Western culture tends more to values of openness to change. These findings are consistent with previous research” (Aydinli et al. 2016, p. 527). found that Recruited samples differed with respect to conformity and tradition values, measured by the Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ) (Schwartz 2004). Both conformity and tradition were most endorsed by Hong Kong Chinese participants, moderately endorsed by Turkish and American participants, and least endorsed by German participants, which indicates that variation regarding sociocultural value orientation was present in the recruited samples. Lilleoja et al. (2016) find, using the PVQ, that Schwartz’ value structure holds in Estonia and Finland, but not in Ethiopia. (See Boer and Fischer (2013), as well as Rudnev et al. (2018) for meta-analyses of SVS and PVQ data.)
World Values Survey. Hofstede, with his seminal publications in cross-cultural values such as Culture’s Consequences (1980), produced research that distinguished between power distance, individualism/collectivism, masculinity/femininity, uncertainty avoidance, and long/short term orientation. Hofstede’s contribution was more than simply the values themselves, however. He was one of the first researchers to investigate culture of leadership behavior within an organization—that an executive would tend to lead according to the esteemed leadership prototypes within a particular culture (Dorfman et al. 2012). These cultures were grouped into ten regional areas with corresponding cultural dimensions. Like other studies, GLOBE research found that certain values were desirable across cultures, while many were culture-specific (Dorfman et al. 2012). In a systematic review of quantitative studies of culture, Taras et al. (2009) stated that 97.5 percent of measures reviewed were similar in some dimension to concepts introduced by Hofstede.

3.2.2. Beliefs

Numerous cross-cultural studies examine the role of belief in people’s lives across the world (e.g., Francis and Crea 2019; Freese 2004; Frese 2015; Gebauer et al. 2012, 2017; Gotsis and Grimani 2017; Graham and Haidt 2010; Parris and Peachey 2013; Shepherd et al. 2019). These studies attempt to isolate core assumptions about how the world works. For example, Taras et al. (2009, p. 359) stated that belief “goes a level deeper than values.” While this may or may not be the case, it appears to be operative in some of the studies. For example, Leung and Bond (2008) defined Social Axioms as generalized beliefs about categories and events in the social and physical world. Their pattern of asserting the “relationship between two entities” followed the pattern of belief systems, for example “adversity can be overcome by effort.” These beliefs were thus distinguished from values, which were conceptualized as statements about “the absolute merit or desirability of a single entity” (Bou Malham and Saucier 2014, p. 1046). The relationship aspect also distinguished social axioms from normative beliefs such as “we should give help to the poor” (Leung et al. 2012, p. 289). Others also called social axioms “generalized expectancies” that help those in a certain culture establish a locus of control in order to make sense and meaning of their lives (Rotter 1966). The five social axioms have been defined as (1) cynicism, a negative view of human nature and social groups; (2) social complexity, a belief that problems can be solved in many ways and people adapt; (3) reward for application, the belief that hard work and planning are rewarded; (4) religiosity, a belief in the supernatural and its positive effect on people; and (5) fate control, that fate can control lives, but is predictable and can be influenced (Bou Malham and Saucier 2014; Duke Religion Index: DRI).
Results from a 2014 test of the cross-cultural generalizability of social axioms within 23 countries (N = 7275) showed modest measurement invariance, with social complexity and fate control showing more internal inconsistency and variety across cultures (Bou Malham and Saucier 2014). A 2015 article from 33 countries shifted the focus to replicating findings for individual, country and world region units. Results indicated that the SAS replicated at the individual level, but less so for country and world region-level analysis. The relationship between individual- and country-level factor structure demonstrated that non-generalizable beliefs pertained more to personality or culture, which is of immense theoretical importance in the ongoing advance of understanding nature and nurture. Such replicability studies can also illuminate the stability of beliefs over time (Stankov and Saucier 2015).
In a compilation study of 17 cross-cultural indices, social axioms variables regarding religious and spiritual beliefs showed preeminent significance in cross-national differences in the world (Saucier et al. 2015). Saucier and colleagues found that the largest relative differences were in fact not regarding variables that cross-cultural studies most often emphasized. Rather, the five largest differences between countries were with the beliefs and experiences of religion and spirituality. Saucier suggested that cross-cultural researchers’ intent on finding large between-country differences should “focus on beliefs connected to religion (or the metaphysical),” especially aspects that influenced the daily lived experience of people’s spiritual selves (2015, p. 63). This argument resonated with other work attesting to the explanatory power of belief in the comparative study of culture (e.g., Tarakeshwar et al. 2003; Fischer and Schwartz 2011; Georgas et al. 2004; as cited in Saucier et al. 2015; Wiepking and Handy 2015).

3.2.3. Morality

Concepts of morality have advanced over the past decade (e.g., Heinzelmann et al. 2012; Iyer et al. 2012; Metz 2007; Sachdeva et al. 2011; Suhler and Churchland 2011; Ugazio et al. 2014; Vauclair et al. 2014), with some previous definitions of morality limited to concerns at an individual level regarding justice and fairness, and others pointing to the “big three” of community, autonomy, and divinity (Graham et al. 2011; Shweder et al. 1997). For example, Haidt and Kesebir (2010) proposed an expanded approach, which defined morals according to their role, incorporating previous frameworks while also explaining morality beyond the obligations of the individual: “Moral systems are interlocking sets of values, virtues, norms, practices, identities, institutions, technologies, and evolved psychological mechanisms that work together to suppress or regulate selfishness and make social life possible” (p. 800).
The notion of regulating selfishness in order to make social life possible is the key distinction between morality and values. There are, however, many values that could be considered moral due to their differing importance in societies, and how they guide a person or group (Schwartz 2011a). Further clarity is provided through description of bright lights and bright lines, mentioned previously (Vaisey and Miles 2014). Bright lines, in particular, represent the arena of morality theory that examine what is disdained or forbidden both in particular cultures and universally.
The Moral Foundations Theory (MFT) described human morality according to instincts situated in moral systems that pervaded all cultures: harm/care, fairness/reciprocity, ingroup/loyalty, authority/respect, and purity/sanctity. MFT provided a framework for examining the moral systems of a wide variety of cultures that constructed moral complexes in vastly different ways (Graham et al. 2011). This is due to the unique set of stimuli—both positive traditions and problems that need solved—in every culture, community, family, and individual. Accordingly, while humans may share basic moral intuitions, these are practiced differently, based on cultural learning over time, assigned different meanings, and grouped into intricate moral complexes. For example, the Arabic notion of ‘hamasa’ is commonly known as valor, yet a more complete description includes bravery, patience, persistence, protection of the weak, and defiance of the strong. While there is not an inherent connection between the virtues, ancient Arabic culture has, over time, grouped them as a set, or moral complex, of esteemed virtuous traits (Haidt and Joseph 2004). Theorizing such processes, MFT made four major claims about how morality develops over time through four stages: (1) nativism, the first draft of the moral mind; (2) cultural learning, the first draft’s edits during development in a certain culture; (3) intuitionism, that intuitions comes before reason; and (4) pluralism, that many social changes result in many foundations of morality (Graham et al. 2012). Despite contributions as a leading scheme to analyze morality, empirical research examining MFT psychometrics state the theory is useful but not yet optimal across cultures, as factors such as ‘loyalty to in-groups’, religious purity, disgust, and others, carry different meanings across cultures (Nilsson and Erlandsson 2015; Yilmaz et al. 2016). MFT’s theorists also invited in-depth theoretical critiques of their work, and published an analysis of it (Graham et al. 2012, p. 30).
While MFT theory diverged in its trajectory, the theory of the Ethics of Autonomy, Community and Divinity also continued to develop. Researchers created a tool, the Ethical Values Assessment (EVA), to operationalize the concepts. EVA and its underlying theory also belong in morality studies, as they examine the issues of moral autonomy, defined as “the interest, well-being and rights of individuals (self or other) and fairness;” the ethic of community, with a focus on duties, interests, and welfare of people as they form parts of social groups; and the ethic of divinity, which considers morality in light of persons as spiritual beings (Padilla-Walker and Jensen 2015, p. 181). Further research using this framework has emphasized both the developmental and culturally-specific nature of these conceptions of morality, much of the data being qualitative and primarily collected in Western contexts (Jensen 2015a, 2015b, 2018). Validation of the EVA (Padilla-Walker and Jensen 2015) and the culturally comparative aspects continue to develop, albeit in a U.S. context (Jensen 2018). Turkish researchers also employed the EVA to compare moral language according to gender identity and sexual orientation (Atik and Varol 2019b). A second Ethical Values Assessment, developed by Klugman and Stump (2006), relates to ethics training for university students in the U.S.A and is not within the scope of this meta-analysis.
Lastly, cross-cultural, quantitative empirical research in the field of morality is advancing through the convening work of a body of knowledge entitled Measuring Morality. Not an independent theory, this work is an effort to convene, integrate, and test a variety of moral theories and their corresponding instruments, including Moral Foundations and Ethical Values Assessment. This collection of both theoretical and empirical knowledge has many limitations, not the least of which is lack of cross-cultural, non-Western construction and data sets; nevertheless the effort in itself serves to group previously disparate but similar approaches to quantify the study of morality.

3.2.4. Integrative Approaches

Theories and measures continue to develop in the quantitative study of culture. While much of the work of the previous decade included refining and validating measures across cultures, a major current trend is more integrative. Contemporary approaches often assemble multiple constructs—values, beliefs, and morality—into a single survey, in order to investigate how these measurements map to one another, and to create scales designed to focus on the intersection with other topics, such as politics, philanthropy, or youth development. For example, the Survey of World Views (SWV) is an amalgamation of beliefs, values, and morality survey items. Notably, the study found major differences outside of the values normally emphasized in cross-cultural research (i.e., Schwartz Values Survey). The findings of major differences between populations of the 33 countries represented instead were values about religiosity, ethnonationalism, hierarchy within families, and finally aspects of collectivism within families. Some of these differences are beliefs related to the Divine, while others describe the social value placed on being religious. For example, regarding religious beliefs, large between-country variance was found in items such as: “my religious beliefs are what really lie behind my whole approach to life” and “in my life I experience the presence of the Divine,” as well as “I believe in predestination—that all things have been divinely determined beforehand.” And “In this society, people believe that spirits of dead ancestors are active and can affect events in everyday life.” Other aspects of religion, however, describe more of the social values aspects of religiosity. The Survey of World Views demonstrates that, while certain cross-cultural studies emphasize paradigmatic approaches to understanding belief, morality, and values, other approaches integrate the measures in order to mine for understanding across constructs.
The Measuring Morality Survey (MMS) consists of nineteen measurements of belief, morality, and values, including the Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ) and Ethical Values Assessment (EVA). The library of cultural measurements is intended to be used cross-culturally, but as an integrative approach thus far, has only been implemented within the United States. The tools have been used to validate the Ethical Values Assessment (Padilla-Walker and Jensen 2015), compare morality and political engagement (Miles and Vaisey 2015, 2014; Johnson et al. 2014), examine moral predictors of prosocial behavior (Piff et al. 2015), explain the demographics of morality in the United States (Miles 2014), and investigate the relationship between economic inequality and generosity amongst the rich (Stephens et al. 2007).
Finally, a number of studies have utilized cross-cultural quantitative measures of belief, morality, and values to investigate other topics. For example, the constructs of morality has been used to compare Muslim and Christian ethics in Britain and France (Croucher 2011), elderly German and U.S. citizens moral interactions in virtual spaces (Dogruel et al. 2013), and Kantian duty violations between individuals in the United States and Korea (An and Trafimow 2014). Likewise beliefs have been cross-investigated with other measures such as social cynicism belief and social dominance orientation between the United States, Russia, and Portugal (Alexandra et al. 2017); social beliefs and consumer behavior (Berkín 2018); and Turkish and Kyrgyz students’ beliefs and notions of justice (Karadağ and Akgün 2016). Figure 3 visualizes the increasing integration of values, beliefs, and morality, with the integrations of these being SWV, MMS, and more.

3.3. Analysis of Geographies

Despite the advances of the integrationist approaches discussed above, a persistent challenge remains for the quantitative study of culture: Western biases in the conceptualization of these constructs. Importantly, this issue needs to be considered in relation to both the researched cultures, in terms of the localities of data collection, and the culture of the researchers, in terms of the localities of the scholars who participate in developing the theories, definitions, and initial wording of the survey measures. On the one hand, progress has been made in the last 50 years, with regard to broadening the geographies and cultures researched. For example, the European Values Survey (EVS) quickly spawned the World Values Survey (WVS) and that project has now surveyed aspects of culture in nearly 100 countries on six continents (see Table 2). Likewise, scholarship on Moral Foundations Theory (MFT) has broadened beyond analysis of U.S. political-cultural divides to a growing interest in global patterns and differences in regard to morality (e.g., Cottone et al. 2007; Davis et al. 2016, 2017).
On the other hand, considerable work remains to more fully integrate under-studied geographies. For example, the Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ), which was specifically designed with non-Western contexts in mind, has gained only modest traction internationally (see Table 3). Moreover, Lilleoja et al. (2016) encountered psychometric problems with the PVQ applied between Estonia and Finland, on the one hand, and Ethiopia, on the other hand. Likewise, Nilsson and Erlandsson (2015) encountered psychometric problems with the Moral Foundations Questionnaire (MFQ) in Swedish context/language in comparison with its English counterpart. In addition, the MFQ has only been used in a small number of large global studies (see Table 5).
Given the unambiguous tilt of research toward the West we expect more analytical precision and explanatory power in cultural study of Europe and North America than other regions. Not surprisingly, for example, fully five (Baltic, Catholic Europe, English Speaking, Orthodox, Protestant Europe) of the nine regions in the most recent version of the Inglehart-Welzel cultural map (Figure 2 above) are composed exclusively of European nation-states plus Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the U.S. Yet, the same map lumps 27 countries together in one single region, African-Islamic. This region contains more than three times as many nation-states as the average (8.4) included in the five regions mentioned immediately above. Therefore, on the one hand, the relatively similar neighbors Estonia and Finland are placed in different world regions; and, on the other hand, the vastly different Azerbaijan and Ghana exist together in the same world region.

4. Discussion

While there have been advancements in including more researched geographies, relatively little progress has been made in broadening the cultural and geographic perspectives of the researcher. The problem of positionality has dogged the scholarly community, perhaps due to the remnants of positivism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It is ironic that the study of a highly perspectival topic—human culture—has largely been studied without concerted attention to the localities of the researchers developing the key constructs of interest. To avoid perpetuating colonialism, future studies need to ask: Who created the measures and scales? Whose theoretical frameworks undergirded the research agenda? Who interpreted the data? Unfortunately, the preponderance of quantitative research of culture is mono-cultural in its methodology: designed, conducted, and interpreted by Western researchers. This paper contributes to changing that trend.

Limitations and Future Directions

Though the analysis reviewed in this paper has been expansive in many ways, any scoped set of parameters comes with limitations for what is included versus excluded. For example, this analysis focused on comparative studies that prioritized world regions other than the United States. This does not mean that studies within the United States are not of value, but rather indicates the priority of this study to focus on other geographies. The field would also be advanced from future studies conducting meta-analyses of the United States, as many interesting investigations focus on within-U.S. differences in regional cultures (e.g., southern, northern, western, and eastern U.S. cultures). Setting those publications as beyond the scope of this study is not without its limitations. Additionally, this study did not attend to the many barometer studies that survey world regions, or to studies that focus on differences within countries. These are also worthy of attention, and future meta-analyses could focus on barometer studies or cross-cultural analyses within countries as a way to advance the synthesis work in this paper.
Moreover, the sourced publication outlets are not the only that are of importance in the field, and synthesis of additional sources would expand the interdisciplinarity of the field. Plus, one-nation studies can be a rich source of valuable information. With these limitations in mind, future studies could replicate the approach of this paper with additional publication outlets and more expansive scope criteria. For example, key would be a meta-analysis of all the qualitative, interpretive, and ethnographic research within under-studied regions.
Another potential limitation of the study is its interdisciplinary approach. While interdisciplinary synthesis can be a helpful way to advance the field of cross-cultural studies, the attention to breadth over depth introduces the potential to miss important nuances within a particular discipline’s approach. Interdisciplinary synthesis is also not bound by consensus regarding the most important publication outlets to include, and thus there could be particular journals that scholars from a certain discipline would want to have included in any meta-analysis. These are valid concerns, and future research could improve upon the synthesis work of this paper by surveying the most relevant publications within specific disciplines. Instead, this paper focused on synthesizing research across disciplines. For example, the disciplines included in the scoped publications include at least the following list: psychology (99 publications), business (25 publications), social psychology (24 publications), leadership (19 publications), management (11 publications), political science (9 publications), sociology (9 publications), anthropology (5 publications), and economics (2 publications). This simple analysis reveals that not all disciplines received equal attention.
Future directions of cross-cultural studies could thus advance upon this synthesis by attending to some of the less-studied disciplines, such as the anthropological terms etic and emic. Etic refers to an evaluation of a community using external frames of reference; an emic approach instead seeks to understand a culture using its own frames of reference. Emic analysis requires intimate knowledge of a culture, such as the “thick description” championed by Geertz (1973) or the in-depth study conducted by Shweder (1990) in India. Yet, both of these researchers were external culturally to the researched community of their studies. A more fully emic approach to cultural research would be one formulated, conducted, and interpreted by host-culture researchers. That is, the researched and researcher culture and geography would converge.
Examples of this cross-cultural convergence exist. Metz (2007), a South African researcher, used the Bantu-language term ubuntu (“humanness”) to work, as his title suggests, “Toward An African Moral Theory.” He noted that, “the most justified normative theory of right action that has an African pedigree is the requirement to produce harmony and to reduce discord, where harmony is a matter of identity and solidarity.” This is an illustration of the kind of within-culture theorizing that needs to be more thoroughly integrated and adopted into quantitative studies desiring to compare particular cultures (in this South Africa) to other localities. Another helpful example of a quantitative study of culture in which the researchers share the cultural background of the researched is that of the aforementioned The Chinese Culture Connection (1987), now more than 30 years old. Deep knowledge of the China culture enabled the researchers to validate portions of prior etic work (i.e., some of Hofstede’s findings) and also to contribute important additions (“Confucian work values”) based on an emic understanding of their own. As their paper rightly announced in its opening, “The East and the West must unite to give each other what is lacking” (1987, p. 143).
In addition, we recommend that scholars in prominent institutions and editors of international journals seek out and illuminate research by scholars from understudied regions. A great deal of insightful emically-oriented research exists out of the view of international journals and prominent databases. Also, while a handful of studies have conducted longitudinal research, many have been cross-sectional only, and therefore do not provide information on the durability of culture over time. As such, cross-cultural research should intersect with research on life-course development. In doing so, scholars could identify dynamic aspects of values, beliefs, and morality at micro, meso, and macro levels.
Finally, many have mentioned the need for methods aside from and in addition to self-reporting, traditional field research and experiments in order to understand dimensions of beliefs, morality, and values across cultures. Moreover, collaboratives such as the United Nations Big data project are changing the approaches to both humanitarian research and response (Meier 2015). These methods could include machine learning to understand valuable underlying patterns within complex data that would otherwise be extremely difficult to uncover. Many such studies result in what is known as the mosaic effect, when disparate pieces of data or information—although individually of limited utility—become significant when combined with other types of information. In conclusion, many advancements have occurred in the cross-cultural study of values, beliefs, and morality. Future studies need to advance the field through more integration and greater geographical diversity.

5. Conclusions

In summary, the quantitative study of culture has advanced dramatically in the post-WWII era; and in particular since Hofstede’s landmark study. Researchers, largely from the West, have extensively studied elements of comparative culture in Europe, Northern America, and a handful of other locations. Research in understudied regions has increasingly been recognized as an urgent task. Yet, Western bias persists in the geographic and cultural coverage of the research (i.e., the researched cultures). In addition similar bias exists in relation to the geographies and cultures represented by researchers themselves. As such, the quantitative study of topics such as values, beliefs, and morality is largely divorced from the anthropological principle of emic inquiry. Much more work needs to be done to further internationalize cross-cultural research methodologically.
Secondly, cross-cultural quantitative research needs to more directly integrate study of values, beliefs, and morality. As cross-cultural measurement tools continue to develop, integrated approaches can reveal understandings that would not be demonstrated in paradigmatic-style research. Pairing values, beliefs, and morality with other social phenomena will reveal unique insights, such as the measurements of religious and spiritual, intergenerational transmission of values, and ethno-national aspects of culture demonstrated large between-country differences that merit further testing (Saucier et al. 2015). Such work should thoughtfully address which and how each aspect is included, guided by both the measurement tools and culture-specific theory (Taras et al. 2009, 2010).

Author Contributions

Conceptualization, J.L.G., A.L.W., and P.S.H.; Methodology, J.L.G., P.S.H., and A.L.W.; Formal Analysis, J.L.G., A.L.W., and P.S.H.; Data Curation, J.L.G., P.S.H., and A.L.W.; Writing-Original Draft Preparation, A.L.W. and J.L.G.; Writing-Review & Editing, P.S.H., J.L.G. and A.L.W.; Visualization, P.S.H.; Supervision, P.S.H.; Project Administration, P.S.H.; Funding Acquisition, P.S.H. and J.L.G. All authors have read and agreed to the published version of the manuscript.


This research was funded by the University of Notre Dame grant number 262164IUPUI, as part of the Global Religion Research Initiative, which is part of a larger grant award from Templeton Religion Trust of Nassau, Bahamas: grant number TRT0118.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


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Figure 1. Number of included studies by year of publication.
Figure 1. Number of included studies by year of publication.
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Figure 2. Most recent Cultural Map from Wave 6. Source: Inglehart and Welzel (2010).
Figure 2. Most recent Cultural Map from Wave 6. Source: Inglehart and Welzel (2010).
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Figure 3. Visualization of attention to beliefs, values, morality and their integration in each study.
Figure 3. Visualization of attention to beliefs, values, morality and their integration in each study.
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Table 1. Reviewed Cross-Cultural Surveys and Publications.
Table 1. Reviewed Cross-Cultural Surveys and Publications.
Hofstede Cultural Values Scale (CVSCALE)(Eringa et al. 2015; Hofstede 1997; Hofstede and Minkov 2010; Kim and Kim 2010; Matusitz and Musambira 2013; McCrae and Terracciano 2005; Minkov and Hofstede 2012a, 2012b; Mooij and Hofstede 2010; The Chinese Culture Connection 1987; Yoo et al. 2011)
European Social Survey (ESS)(Bilsky et al. 2010; Fischer 2012; Guveli 2015; Hart et al. 2013; Jowell et al. 2007; Kaasa et al. 2013, 2014; Minkov and Hofstede 2014)
European Values Survey (EVS)(Bréchon and Gonthier 2017; Halman et al. 2011; Halman and Voicu 2010; Kaasa et al. 2013, 2014; Matei and Abrudan 2018; Pettersson and Esmer 2008)
World Values Survey (WVS)(Amoranto et al. 2010; Basáñez and Inglehart 2016; Beugelsdijk and Welzel 2018; Dalton and Welzel 2014; Dobewall and Rudnev 2014; Fischer and Schwartz 2011; Gore et al. 2019; Hofstede 1997; R. Inglehart 2018; R. L. Inglehart 2003; R. Inglehart and Welzel 2010; Johnson and Mislin 2012; Korotayev et al. 2019; Matei and Abrudan 2018; Minkov and Hofstede 2012a, 2012b; Vauclair and Fischer 2011; Welzel 2010)
Schwartz Value Survey (SVS)(Bardi and Goodwin 2011; Boer and Fischer 2013; Daniel et al. 2015; Danis et al. 2011; Dobewall and Rudnev 2014; Fischer et al. 2011; Fischer and Schwartz 2011; Fischer et al. 2010; Gollan and Witte 2014; Hanel et al. 2018; Kasser 2011; Knafo et al. 2011; Korotayev et al. 2019; Lee et al. 2011; Rudnev et al. 2018; S. Schwartz 2012; S. H. Schwartz 1992, 2004, 2011b, 2011a, 2014, 2016; S. H. Schwartz and Sagiv 1995; Smith 2011; Vaisey and Miles 2014; van Herk and Poortinga 2012; Vauclair and Fischer 2011; Vauclair et al. 2015; 2011; Welzel 2010)
Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ)(Aydinli et al. 2016; Bender and Chasiotis 2011; Bilsky et al. 2015; Bilsky et al. 2010; Boer and Fischer 2013; Caprara et al. 2017; Cieciuch et al. 2013; Wet et al. 2019; Fischer and Schwartz 2011; Güngör et al. 2012; He et al. 2017; Holtschlag et al. 2013; Liem et al. 2011; Lilleoja et al. 2016; Robinson 2013; Rudnev et al. 2018; Sandy et al. 2014; Sanrı and Goodwin 2013; Schiefer 2013; Schiefer et al. 2010; Schwartz et al. 2001; Simón et al. 2017; Sørensen et al. 2012; Stanley et al. 2015; Tulviste et al. 2014; Vecchione et al. 2012; Vyrost et al. 2010)
Global Leadership and Organizational Behavior Effectiveness (GLOBE)(Chhokar et al. 2007; Dickson et al. 2012; Dorfman et al. 2012; House et al. 2013; House and Hanges 2004; Kabasakal et al. 2012; Mendenhall et al. 2012; Mittal and Dorfman 2012; Stankov 2015; Steers et al. 2012; Takahashi et al. 2012; Wang et al. 2012
Other leadership studies similar to GLOBE: Bangara et al. 2012; Beleska-Spasova et al. 2012; Caligiuri and Tarique 2012; Davila and Elvira 2012; Efrat and Shoham 2012; Youssef and Luthans 2012; Zander et al. 2012)
Moral Foundations Questionnaire(MFQ or MFT for theory)(Alqahtani 2018; Alsheddi 2018; Athota et al. 2019; Bespalov et al. 2017; Boer and Fischer 2013; Cantarero et al. 2018; Curry et al. 2019; Doğruyol et al. 2019; Du 2019; Feldman 2019; Graham et al. 2012, 2011; Haidt 2013a, 2013b; Haidt and Graham 2007; Haidt and Joseph 2004, 2011; Haidt et al. 1993; Hu 2017; Hu et al. 2020; Iurino and Saucier 2020; Kisok R. Kim et al. 2012; Kisok Richard Kim and Kang 2013; Koleva et al. 2016; Matsuo et al. 2019; Mooijman et al. 2018; Moreira et al. 2019; Nechtelberger et al. 2017; Nejat et al. 2015; Niazi et al. 2020; Nilsson and Erlandsson 2015; Ochoa et al. 2016; Peker et al. 2018; Purzycki et al. 2018; Rahman 2015; Shim et al. 2018; Shweder 1990; Shweder and Haidt 1993; Shweder et al. 1997; Simpson 2017; Haidt and Joseph 2011; Vaisey and Miles 2014; Leeuwen et al. 2012; Yalçındağ et al. 2019; Yilmaz et al. 2016; Yilmaz and Alper 2019; Yilmaz and Saribay 2019; Zhang and Li 2015)
Ethical Values Assessment (EVA)(Arnett and Jensen 2015; Atik and Varol 2019a, 2019b; Bayram 2018; Dawson 2016; Erinç 2019; Everett et al. 2020; Jensen 2015a, 2015b, 2018; Jensen et al. 2015; Kwok 2016; Lee et al. 2015; McKenzie 2014; Laura Maria Padilla-Walker and Jensen 2015; Raimi et al. 2020; Renner et al. 2013; Syarifah et al. 2018; Wu 2017)
Measuring Morality Survey (MMS)(Beyerlein and Vaisey 2013; Côté et al. 2015; Dawson 2016; Hitlin and Vaisey 2013; Johnson et al. 2014; Kiley and Vaisey 2020; Longest et al. 2013; Miles and Vaisey 2014, 2015; Piff et al. 2015; Vaisey and Lizardo 2016; Vaisey and Miles 2014; Victor et al. 2015)
Social Axioms Survey (SAS)(Bou Malham and Saucier 2014; Dragolov and Boehnke 2015; Leung et al. 2002, 2012; Różycka-Tran et al. 2015; Stankov 2015, 2016; Stankov and Lee 2016a; 2016b; Stankov and Saucier 2015)
Survey of World Views (SWV): (Henrich et al. 2010; Jones 2010; Saucier 2000; Saucier et al. 2015)
Community Autonomy and Divinity Scale (CADS)(Guerra and Giner-Sorolla 2010; Jensen et al. 2015; Kapadia and Bhangaokar 2015; Kollareth et al. 2019; Pandya et al. 2015; Zhang and Li 2015)
Table 2. Geographic coverage of the seven World Values Survey (WVS) waves.
Table 2. Geographic coverage of the seven World Values Survey (WVS) waves.
WVS Wave Geographic Coverage
Wave 1: 1981–1984 10 countries from six continents:
Argentina, Australia, Finland, Hungary, Japan, Mexico, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, United States
Wave 2: 1990–1994 21 countries from five continents:
Argentina, Belarus, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Chile, China, India, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Poland, Russian Federation, Slovakia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United States
Wave 3: 1995–1999 57 countries from six continents:
Albania, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany (East), Germany (West), Great Britain, Hungary, India, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russian Federation, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela
Wave 4: 2000–2004 41 countries from five continents:
Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Bangladesh, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Chile, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Japan, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Mexico, Moldova, Montenegro, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Tanzania, Turkey, Uganda, United States, Venezuela, Vietnam, Zimbabwe
Wave 5: 2005–2009 58 countries from six continents:
Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Canada, Colombia, Cyprus, Chile, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Guatemala, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Malaysia, Mali, Mexico, Moldova, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Peru, Poland, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Serbia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Vietnam, Zambia
Wave 6: 2010–2014 60 countries from six continents:
Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Brazil, Colombia, Cyprus, Chile, China, Ecuador, Egypt, Estonia, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Haiti, Hong Kong, India, Iraq, Japan, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Qatar, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Singapore, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Tukey, Ukraine, United States, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Zimbabwe
Wave 7: 2017–2020 Targeting approximately 80 countries from six continents. At the time of publication of this article, the survey has been conducted in at least the following 26 countries:
Andorra, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, China, Ecuador, Egypt, Germany, Greece, Jordan, Indonesia, Iraq, Malaysia, Mexico, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Thailand, Turkey, UAE, USA
Table 3. Uses of the Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ), 2010–2020 in comparative cultural research.
Table 3. Uses of the Portrait Values Questionnaire (PVQ), 2010–2020 in comparative cultural research.
Study GeographySubject
Bilsky et al. (2010)Austria, Belgium, Czech, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United KingdomTesting Schwartz values structure
Schiefer et al. (2010)Germany (Native Germans, Turkish and Former Soviet Union immigrants); Israel (Native Israelis, Former Soviet Union immigrants, Arab Israelis)The influence of group-level values on an individual’s view of outgroups
Bender and Chasiotis (2011)Cameroon, China, GermanyNumber of sibling’s effect on autobiographical memory
Fischer and Schwartz (2011)19 European countriesValue difference at individual, national and cultural levels
Liem et al. (2011)Australia, Indonesia, Philippines, SingaporeValidating SVS with adolescents
Güngör et al. (2012)Belgium, Turkey Religiosity, values and acculturation of adolescents
Sørensen et al. (2012)Belgium, Denmark, Germany, PolandAttitudes toward pork production
Vecchione et al. (2012)Germany, Italy, SpainEffect of values and traits on immigration perceptions
Cieciuch et al. (2013)Australia, Brazil, Chile, Finland, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Slovakia, Spain, the United Kingdom, Ukraine, United StatesTesting versions of the PVQ
Holtschlag et al. (2013)Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Latvia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Rumania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine Effect of values on hierarchical status achievement
Robinson (2013)European Social Survey, two wavesTesting age differences in SVS
Sanrı and Goodwin (2013)Great Britain, TurkeyRelationship between values and love styles
Schiefer (2013)24 European countriesValues, attitudes and immigration
Sandy et al. (2014)Respondents via Facebook’s MyType: United States (72%). Other countries of origin included Singapore (8%), Canada (3%), Australia (3%), Great Britain (3%)Testing psychometric properties of the PVQ
Tulviste et al. (2014)Estonia (ethnic Estonians, Russian-speaking minority)Testing stability/change in value consensus
Bilsky et al. (2015)Brazil, Germany, Israel, SpainRelative importance of SVS
Stanley et al. (2015)China, Germany, U.S., VietnamEffect of storytelling/values on resilience
Aydinli et al. (2016)China, Germany, Turkey, U.S.Pro-sociality and volunteering
Lilleoja et al. (2016)Estonia, Ethiopia, FinlandTesting the SVS structure
Caprara et al. (2017)Australia, Brazil, Chile, Finland, Germany, Greece, Israel, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey, Ukraine, United Kingdom, U.S. Values, ideological orientation and voting
He et al. (2017)Bulgaria, Canada, China, Germany, Guatemala, Indonesia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Mexico, Netherlands, Romania, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Turkey, ZambiaCross-cultural comparability of personality and value data
Rudnev et al. (2018)Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Kosovo, Lithuania, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, United KingdomSchwartz value differences across cultures
Wet et al. (2019)Austria, South AfricaLife context, personal values prioritization
Table 4. Geographies of the Global Leadership and Organizational Behavioral Effectiveness (GLOBE) waves.
Table 4. Geographies of the Global Leadership and Organizational Behavioral Effectiveness (GLOBE) waves.
GLOBE Wave Geographic Coverage
Wave 1: 2004 quantitative 10 clusters of 62 societies:
Anglo: Australia, Canada, England, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa (White sample), USA
Confucian Asia: China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan
Eastern Europe: Albania, Czech Republic, Greece, Georgia, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Poland, Russia, Slovenia
Germanic Europe: Austria, Germany-East, Germany-West, Netherlands, Switzerland
Latin America: Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Columbia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, México, Venezuela
Latin Europe: France, Israel, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland (French speaking)
Middle East: Egypt, Kuwait, Morocco, Qatar, Turkey
Nordic Europe: Denmark, Finland, Sweden
Southern Asia: India, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand
Sub-Saharan: Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa (Black sample), Zambia, Zimbabwe
Wave 2: 2007 qualitative 8 clusters of 24 societies (Germanic & Nordic clusters from 2004 study not included):
Anglo: Australia, England, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa,
Confucian Asia: China, Hong Kong, Singapore
Eastern Europe: Greece, Russia
Latin America cluster: Argentina, Columbia, Mexico
Latin Europe: France, Portugal, Spain
Middle East: Turkey
Southern Asia: India
Sub-Saharan: Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa (Black sample), Zambia, and Zimbabwe
Wave 3: 2014 quantitative and qualitative study 24 societies from 6 continents:
Austria, Azerbaijan, Brazil, China, Estonia, Fiji, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, India, Mexico, Netherlands, Nigeria, Peru, Romania, Russia, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey, Tonga, United States, Vanuatu
Wave 4: 2020 and beyond At the time of publication of this article, GLOBE (2020) is targeting approximately 150 societies.
Table 5. Research with Moral Foundations Questionnaire/Theory (MFQ/MFT) beyond Western settings.
Table 5. Research with Moral Foundations Questionnaire/Theory (MFQ/MFT) beyond Western settings.
Study Geography Subject
Graham et al. (2011)Principally Western also samples from Africa, East Asia, Latin America, Middle East, South Asia, Southeast Asia Validates 5 moral foundations and the MFQ
Kim et al. (2012)South Korea and U.S. Political ideology/moral attitudes
Leeuwen et al. (2012)78 or more countries depending on the measureLinks between pathogen prevalence and binding moral foundation
Kim and Kang (2013)South Korea MFT and political orientation
Nejat et al. (2015)Iran Views of ideal society and morality/immorality
Zhang and Li (2015)China Validity of CADS and MFQ
Ochoa et al. (2016)Philippines Religion, MFT and attitudes toward same-sex marriage
Yilmaz et al. (2016)Turkey Validates a Turkish MFQ
Bespalov et al. (2017)Mongolia Youth aspirations, values, morality
Hu (2017)China, U.S.Globalization and values
Nechtelberger et al. (2017)Austria, China, Cyprus, India, Nigeria, Slovakia Globalization, MFT, UN educ. goals
Alqahtani (2018)Saudi Arabia, United KingdomCultural difference and moral foundations
Alsheddi (2018)Saudi Arabia, United KingdomMoral identity and cultural difference
Cantarero et al. (2018)Estonia, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Spain, SwedenRelationship between power distance and moral judgment
Peker et al. (2018)Turkey “Moral discrepancy” between personal and societal moral beliefs, and impact on mental health
Purzycki et al. (2018)Brazil, Fiji, Tanzania, Tyva Republic, Vanuatu, Mauritius Morality, rule-breaking favoritism and religion
Shim et al. (2018)Singapore, South Korea, U.S. Crisis attribution, moral outrage, MFT
Athota et al. (2019)Australia and India Relationship between personality, individual morality, well-being
Curry et al. (2019)60 societies from Sub-Saharan Africa, Circum-Mediterranean, East Eurasia, Insular Pacific, North America, South America Cooperation and morality
Doğruyol et al. (2019)WEIRD; Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Netherlands, UK, USA; Non-Weird: Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Hong Kong (China), India, Japan, Mexico, Serbia, South Africa, Taiwan (China), Turkey, UAE, Uruguay Tests universality of MFT
Du (2019)China (Han, Tibetan and Uygur)Moral foundations in eastern culture—ethnic and gender difference
Hu et al. (2020)China and U.S. Links global orientations and MFT
Matsuo et al. (2019)Japan Creates Japanese MFT Dictionary
Moreira et al. (2019)Brazil Validates a Brazilian MFQ
Yalçındağ et al. (2019)Turkey Develops/test Turkish MFT
Yilmaz and Alper (2019)WEIRD: Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Hong Kong (China), India, Japan, Mexico, Serbia, South Africa, Taiwan (China), Turkey, UAE, Uruguay; Non-WEIRD: Austria, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, The Netherlands, UK, U.S.Analytic cognitive style (ACS), conservatism (right-wing) and WEIRD vs. Non-WEIRD contexts
Yilmaz and Saribay (2019)Turkey, U.S. MFT and conservativism
Iurino and Saucier (2020)Africa (sub-Saharan): Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania; East Asia: China (mainland), Japan, Taiwan; East/southeast Europe: Greece, Poland, Ukraine; Latin America: Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Peru; North America: Canada, U.S.; North Africa/Middle East: Morocco, Turkey; South Asia: Bangladesh, India, Nepal; Southeast Asia: Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand; Western Europe: England, Germany, Spain Tests generalizability of MFT
Niazi et al. (2020)Pakistan Moral stereotypes by gender
Table 6. Geographical coverage of the 2012 Survey of World Views (SWV).
Table 6. Geographical coverage of the 2012 Survey of World Views (SWV).
Regions (9) Countries (33)
Anglo Australia, Canada, Ireland, UK, USA
East Asia China, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan
Eastern Europe Greece, Poland, Russia, Ukraine
Latin America Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, Peru
Middle East/North Africa Egypt, Morocco, Turkey
South Asia Bangladesh, Indian, Nepal
South East Asia Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand
Sub-Saharan Africa Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania
Western Europe Germany, Netherlands, Spain

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Goodwin, J.L.; Williams, A.L.; Snell Herzog, P. Cross-Cultural Values: A Meta-Analysis of Major Quantitative Studies in the Last Decade (2010–2020). Religions 2020, 11, 396.

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Goodwin, Jamie Lynn, Andrew Lloyd Williams, and Patricia Snell Herzog. 2020. "Cross-Cultural Values: A Meta-Analysis of Major Quantitative Studies in the Last Decade (2010–2020)" Religions 11, no. 8: 396.

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