The five-factor model of the moral foundations theory is stable across WEIRD and non-WEIRD cultures
Although numerous models attempted to explain the nature of moral judgment, moral foundations theory (MFT) led to a paradigmatic change in this field by proposing pluralist "moralities" (care, fairness, loyalty, authority, sanctity). The five-factor structure of MFT is thought to be universal and rooted in the evolutionary past but the evidence is scarce regarding the stability of this five-factor structure across diverse cultures. We tested this universality argument in a cross-cultural dataset of 30 diverse societies spanning the WEIRD (Western, educated, industrialized, rich, democratic) and non-WEIRD cultures by testing measurement invariance of the short-form of the moral foundations questionnaire. The results supported the original conceptualization that there are at least five diverse moralities although loadings of items differ across WEIRD and non-WEIRD cultures. In other words, the current research shows for the first time that the five-factor structure of MFT is stable in the WEIRD and non-WEIRD cultures.
SourcePersonality and Individual Differences
KeywordsMoral foundations questionnaire
WEIRD and non-WEIRD cultures