Does the Importance of Parent and Peer Relationships for Adolescents' Life Satisfaction Vary Across Cultures?

Beate Schwarz*, Boris Mayer, Gisela Trommsdorff, Asher Ben-Arieh, Mihaela Friedlmeier, Katarzyna Lubiewska, Ramesh Mishra, Karl Peltzer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations


This study investigated whether the associations between (a) the quality of the parent-child relationship and peer acceptance and (b) early adolescents' life satisfaction differed depending on the importance of family values in the respective culture. As part of the Value of Children Study, data from a subsample of N = 1,034 adolescents (58% female, M age = 13.62 years, SD = 0.60 years) from 11 cultures was analyzed. Multilevel analyses revealed a positive relation between parental admiration and adolescents' life satisfaction independent of cultural membership. Further, the higher the importance of family values in a culture, the weaker was the positive effect of peer acceptance on adolescents' life satisfaction. The results highlight the universal importance of parental warmth and support in adolescence and underline the effect of culturally shared family values on the role of peer acceptance for adolescent development.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)55-80
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Early Adolescence
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This study is part of the cross-cultural and interdisciplinary research project “Value of Children and Intergenerational Relations.” Principal investigators: Gisela Trommsdorff, University of Konstanz, and Bernhard Nauck, Chemnitz University of Technology. For seven countries (People’s Republic of China, Germany, Indonesia, Israel, Poland, Turkey, United States) the study was funded by the German Research Foundation [TR 169/9-1, -2, -3 and NA 164/9-1, -3, -4, -5]. In India, the study was cofunded by the University of Konstanz and the German Research Foundation. In France, the study was funded by the University Victor Segalen, Bordeaux; in Russia it was co-funded by the Lobatchevskij State University, Nizhnij Novgorod; and in South Africa by the University of Limpopo.


  • Parent-adolescent relationships
  • cross-cultural
  • family values
  • life satisfaction
  • peer relationships


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