Cross-cultural psychology of aging

Helene H. FUNG, Da JIANG

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters

7 Citations (Scopus)


It is public knowledge that the world's population is aging. However, what is seldom discussed is the fact that between 2010 and 2040, 66.5% of the world's older population increase will be accounted for by Asia; and within Asia, 42.0% of the increase will be accounted for by China alone. However, empirical studies on aging among the Chinese are few, and the scant findings sometimes suggest that the aging of the Chinese may be different from what is suggested in the mainstream literature. Moreover, cross-cultural differences in the psychology of aging are often different from the ethnic and racial differences on aging that have been described in the literature. For example, the difference in socioeconomic status that drives much of the health inequality observed in the ethnic/racial literature has a very minor presence in the cross-cultural psychology literature. In this chapter, we first review our own theoretical and empirical work, and the work of others, on East-West differences in age-related personality, social relationships and cognition. Next, we discuss two other approaches to studying cross-cultural aging. The first approach uses aging as a proxy of cognitive and neural changes, and then tests whether cultural differences in cognition diminish or magnify with these changes. The second approach compiles cross-national data sets to test the generalizability of aging-related phenomena. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of the psychology of aging
EditorsK. Warner SCHAIE, Sherry L. WILLIS
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherAcademic Press is an imprint of Elsevier
ISBN (Print)9780124114692
Publication statusPublished - 2016


Fung, H. H., & Jiang, D. (2016). Cross-cultural psychology of aging. In K. W. Schaie & S. L. Willis (Eds.), Handbook of the psychology of aging (8 ed., pp. 323-337). London: Academic Press is an imprint of Elsevier.


  • Aging
  • Psychology
  • Culture


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