Journal of Organizational Behavior

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Volume 27 Issue 3 (May 2006), Pages 257-401

Cultural and individual differences in self‐rating behavior: an extension and refinement of the cultural relativity hypothesis (pages 341-364)


This study examined the relationships between culture, individual attributes, and self‐rating behavior among 1,786 university students in Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan, mainland China, and Japan, and in doing so extended and refined the cultural relativity hypothesis. It explored the difference between vertical and horizontal individualists in self‐rating behavior, and examined the mediating effects of two individual attributes, self‐enhancement propensity and general self‐efficacy in the relationship between individualism and self‐rating behavior. The results confirmed that individualism is the cultural driver for self‐rating leniency, and that the individual‐level assessment of individualism is a stronger predictor of self‐rating leniency than are culture‐level differences. Vertical individualism was found to be positively related to self‐enhancement propensity, which in turn was positively related to self‐rating. Whereas, horizontal individualism was positively related to general self‐efficacy, which in turn had a positive relationship with self‐rating. We discuss the implications of the results for academic research and practical management. Copyright © 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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