Traditional versus Secular Values and the Job-Life Satisfaction Relationship Across Europe
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Using data from the European Values Survey (EVS), we examine the relationshipbetween job and life satisfaction across Europe. We find that for the majority of employeesjob and life satisfaction are positively correlated, thus supporting the spilloverhypothesis, whereby attitudes and practices developed in the life domain spill over intothe work domain and vice versa. In contrast, we find little support for the compensationhypothesis, whereby employees who are dissatisfied in one domain seek compensatoryrewards in the other domain. However, multivariate analysis reveals that the strength ofthe interaction between job and life satisfaction is mitigated by cultural values andinterpersonal trust, as encapsulated in the ‘traditional versus secular values’ indexreported in the EVS data. We thus find that predictors of the job–life satisfactionrelationship vary across cultures and that such cross-cultural variations are systematicallyrelated to salient cultural values and beliefs. The latter findings raise importantquestions about the universal application of existing theories in the subjective well-beingarena.
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