Individualism behind Collectivism: A reflection from Saudi Volunteers

Guoping Jiang*, Christopher Paul Garris, Shafi Aldamer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Volunteering is growing rapidly worldwide and has been recognized as a significant social force, contributing to social development. Motives for volunteering vary widely, ranging from collectivistic factors to individualistic ones. Collectivism is often identified as a main factor that contributes to volunteering, especially in collectivist societies. Our analysis shows that in Saudi Arabia—typically classified as a collectivist society—individualistic considerations such as learning skills, meeting friends, and releasing guilt mediate the effect that collectivistic motivations (e.g., prosocial personality and community identity) have on the decision of continuous volunteering. This finding is applicable to both males and females, to people in different forms of employment, across ages, and regardless of family members’ volunteering behavior, according to moderation analyses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-159
Number of pages16
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2018

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgements The project was funded by the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Project Number: JF10010.

Publisher Copyright:
© International Society for Third-Sector Research and The Johns Hopkins University 2017.


  • Collectivism
  • Individualism
  • Mediated mediation
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Volunteerism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Strategy and Management


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