Socio-demographic effects on cultural biases - A Nordic study of grid-group theory

A1 Journal article (refereed)

Internal Authors/Editors

Publication Details

List of Authors: unnar Grendstad, Susan Sundback
Publication year: 2003
Journal: Acta Sociologica
Journal acronym: ACTA SOCIOL
Volume number: 46
Issue number: 4
Start page: 289
End page: 306
Number of pages: 18
ISSN: 0001-6993


Grid-group theory claims that patterns of social relations only, and not socio-demographic characteristics. can account for biases, of which the theory prescribes four: hierarchy, egalitarianism, individualism and fatalism. Survey analysts conventionally employ respondents' socio-demographic correlates when accounting for values. We take the value survey strategy and apply it to grid-group theory's four biases. Employing a 1999 survey administered in Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and Finland (n = 4,832), we combine two goals in this article. We test how sex, age, education and income can account for biases. By extension, we test grid-group theory's claim of no such effect. The results show that biases are influenced by socio-demographics in ways unaccounted for by the theory The four correlates explain on average 9 per cent of the variation in the biases. Education is the only correlate that has a negative and significant effect across all biases in all countries. Women adhere to egalitarianism, whereas men adhere to individualism. Age is a consistent positive correlate of hierarchy. whereas income is a consistent negative correlate of fatalism. Grid-group theory will not be impaired if it can be shown how robust socio-demographic correlates interact with patterns of social relations.


age, cultural biases, grid-group theory, income, Scandinavia

Last updated on 2020-03-08 at 04:42