Self Actualisation: For Individualistic Cultures Only? Cover Image
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Self Actualisation: For Individualistic Cultures Only?
Self Actualisation: For Individualistic Cultures Only?

Author(s): Ivtzan Itai
Subject(s): Philosophy
Published by: Presa Universitara Clujeana
Keywords: Self-Actualisation; cultural differences; Abraham Malow.

Summary/Abstract: Maslow’s concept of Self Actualisation refers to the greatest “need” in his motivational theory; the need to realize and fulfill one’s potential. Research has continually highlighted the differences between cultures using the individualistic-collectivistic dimension, but these differences have not been extended to the characteristics that define self actualisation. The current study aims to test the cultural validity of Self Actualisation by using the Personal Orientation Inventory (POI) questionnaire as a comprehensive measure of the self actualising characteristics originally highlighted by Maslow. The POI questionnaire was tested on 100 British participants as representing individuals from an individualistic culture, and 100 Indian participants as representing individuals from a collectivistic culture. The POI measured responses on 12 scales, each representing key characteristics of the Self Actualising individual. In support of the hypothesis, the results showed British participants scored significantly higher than the Indian participants on 10 out of the 12 scales. Thus, contrary to the belief that the basic concept of Self Actualisation applies to any human being in any culture, the current findings suggest that the characteristics of Self Actualisation, as defined by Maslow and the POI, cannot be effectively applied to collectivistic cultures in the same way they can in individualistic cultures. Implications include important impact on the workplace, as this concept of Self Actualisation has been integrated into management techniques used by human resources teams, motivating employees and encouraging them to develop self actualising values.

  • Issue Year: I/2008
  • Issue No: 02
  • Page Range: 113-139
  • Page Count: 27
  • Language: English