Asian social psychology: Achievements, threats, and opportunities


  • Paper presented at the Sixth Biennial Conference of the Asian Association of Social Psychology, 2–5 April, 2005, Wellington, New Zealand.

Kwok Leung, Department of Management, City University of Hong Kong, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR. Email:


A scan of citation impact suggests that Asian social psychologists have made significant contributions in three areas: indigenous research, culture and social behaviour, and in several topics in social psychology. An analysis of the most cited articles published in Asian Journal of Social Psychology (AJSP) in 1998–2002 in March 2005 reveals that most papers are concerned with culture, with a focus on either popular topics in the West or indigenous concepts. Asian social psychology seems to be closely associated with cultural issues, but it still lacks unique theoretical contributions, and the number of internationally visible scholars is limited and is mostly confined to East Asia. However, Asian cultures provide a fertile ground for identifying new constructs. Many Asian universities are now under pressure to internationalize, which will motivate more academics to participate in Asian conferences and publish in AJSP. To develop Asian social psychology, effort should be focused on nurturing the next generation of Asian social psychologists, who not only need an international perspective, but also ambition and creativity.