A Cross-National Survey of Seven Countries (1985-93)

Research ObjectAdults in Japan, England, France, West Germany, the USA, the Netherlands, Italy
ItemsOn various topics of people's life in general
ResearcherThe Committee of the comparative study of National Character
The Representative: C. Hayashi
SummaryThe purpose of this study was (a) to establish the analytic methods for comparing attitudinal structures among people residing in various cultural contexts, and (b) to utilize such methods to analyze both the existing and the new datasets and acquire basic knowledge that promotes understanding and cooperation among nations. The cultural- link-based international/cross-national comparative survey method and the statistical analytic methods based on it were key to accomplishing our goal. This report puts together the progress of our project "Cultural Link Survey Analytic Method for a Comparison of National Characters using Attitude Survey: Towards its Application" (funded by "Pilot Study (A) n section of the Fund for Scientific Research, by Ministry of Education, Japan, 1992- 94). Central to this project were the further development and consolidation of the comparative method established in a previous project entitled "Methods Oor International Comparison of Attitude's (funded by `,specially promoted project" section of the Fund Oor Scientific Research, by Ministry of Education, Japan, 1985-89).

In this previous project (especially promoted project"), Japan, United Kingdom, France, Germany and the United States (including Hawaii) were selected for the survey, and these five countries constituted a "chain" with cultural "linkages" among them. To render effective the cultural-link comparative analyses, the following procedure was followed. To establish the content of the questionnaire, researchers collected the necessary information on each nation and wrote questions that could be used identically or approximately identically across countries. The questions were then translated into bach language from Japanese, pilot studies were undertaken, the questions were back-translated, and ideas and opinions were exchanged with researchers in each country, leading finally to the construction of the questionnaire to be used in each country. Samples were drawn via the sampling design most appropriate Oor each country; and face- to"face interviews were conducted in each of the five nations. Data files, containing questions common to the five nations, were compiled from the data thus collected and analyses undertaken.

In addition to conventional statistical analyses, the quantification method - which clarifies ways of thinking from a dynamic perspective - was used to detect the common and unique elements within each nation's attitudinal structures. Not only did the analysis confirm previous findings and claims, it also led to detailed results and in-depth knowledge not otherwise obtained through conventional analytic methods, confirming therefore the effectiveness of the cultural-link survey analytic method for international comparison.

In the present project ("Pilot Study (A) ") , additional data were collected in Italy and the Netherlands, and effort was made to apply our cultural-link-based comparison. This is rather large as a `airport," but we think that it is necessary since a project can qualify as good scientific research, in the field of social sciences and humanities, is it has a clear methodology and provides a detailed and theoretically-informed description of the methods of data collection and data analyses, details of the analyses and of the conditions under which further tests should be conducted. Only when all this information is provided can a project facilitate the continuation of research. We will be very happy if this report is to be utilized to further develop this type of research, beyond the present one.
Sample SizeJapan 4500, England 1043, France 1013, Germany 1000, the USA 1500, the Netherlands 1049, Italy 1048
DocumentsCross National Tabulations: Japan  England  France  Germany  the USA  the Netherlands  Italy
Questionnaire   Informations published in the past
関連執筆物林知己夫, 鈴木達三, 吉野諒三, 他. (1998). 国民性七か国比較. 出光書店.
鈴木達三. (1996). 国際比較調査における標本計画と調査実施に関する一考察. 行動計量学, 23, 1, 46-62.
吉野諒三, 林知己夫, 鈴木達三. (1995). 国民性の国際比較調査の為の質問文の作成―翻訳のプロセスを中心として―. 行動計量学, 22, 1, 62-79.
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