Materialistic Values and Well-Being Among Business Students: Further Evidence of Their Detrimental Effect


  • 1The contributions of the first and fourth authors were supported by a Grant for Scientific Research Flanders (FWO).


According to an environmental-match perspective regarding the content of values (Sagiv & Schwartz, 2000), extrinsic or materialistic values should positively predict well-being in populations in which extrinsic values match the environmentally promoted values (e.g., among business students). However, other value researchers (Kasser & Ahuvia, 2002) disagree with these claims. Although the present study shows that business students ascribe higher importance to extrinsic values than do education students, the negative relation of extrinsic values with well-being and the positive relation with internal distress and substance use was not moderated by the department to which students belonged. Finally, mediational analyses revealed that value orientations could account for the fact that business students report lower well-being and higher substance use in comparison to education students.