Does Valuing Happiness Enhance Subjective Well-Being? The Age-Differential Effect of Interdependence

  • Natalie Wong
  • Xianmin GongEmail author
  • Helene H. Fung
Research Paper


Previous studies found that the association between valuing happiness and well-being could be mediated by interdependence, and such mediation differed across cultures. We hypothesize a similar disparity between younger and older generations within the same culture. To test this hypothesis, the current study assessed Chinese younger and older adults’ self-construal (independence and interdependence), subjective well-being, and the extent to which they valued happiness. The results showed that valuing happiness was only significantly associated with independent self-construal and was not associated with subjective well-being in younger adults. Valuing happiness was positively associated with both independent and interdependent self-construal among older adults, but only the latter mediated the relationship between valuing happiness and subjective well-being. Our findings suggest that the effect of valuing happiness may change with age.


Valuing happiness Pursuit of happiness Subjective well-being Interdependence Independence Aging 



Work on this manuscript was partially supported by Hong Kong Research Grants Council General Research Fund #14403014 and a direct grant from Faculty of Social Science, The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Data Link

The data of the present study can be found on Open Science Framework via the link below:


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© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyThe Chinese University of Hong KongHong KongChina
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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