Culture and subjective well-being: A dynamic constructivist view

Kim-Pong TAM, Hi Po Bobo LAU, Da JIANG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Adopting the dynamic constructivist approach, the present research tested the hypothesis that bicultural people’s subjective well-being (SWB) is more contingent on satisfaction with relationship-related domains and less contingent on satisfaction with self-related domains when Chinese cultural ideas are activated than when American ideas are activated. Two studies on Hong Kong undergraduates with different activation procedures (exposure to cultural icons in Study 1 and questionnaire language in Study 2) and different SWB measures (life satisfaction in Study 1 and subjective happiness in Study 2) provided convergent support to this hypothesis. The present research contributes to the existing understanding of culture and SWB by (a) examining the processes underlying the SWB judgment of bicultural individuals, (b) highlighting cross-situational variations of cultural influence on SWB judgment, and (c) allowing for testing causality of such influence. Copyright © 2012 The Author(s).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-31
JournalJournal of Cross-Cultural Psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012


Tam, K.-P., Lau, H. P. B., & Jiang, D. (2012). Culture and subjective well-being: A dynamic constructivist view. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 43(1), 23-31. doi: 10.1177/0022022110388568


  • Culture
  • Language
  • Subjective well-being
  • Bicultural
  • Dynamic constructivist approach


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