Journal of Adult Development

, Volume 22, Issue 4, pp 206–220 | Cite as

Values and Personal Life Investment in Middle-Age: Measures and Relations

  • Merja Hietalahti
  • Asko Tolvanen
  • Katja Kokko


The present study analyzed the factor structure of Schwartz Value Survey (SVS; 46 items) and the personal life investment (PLI; 10 items) scale, as well as the mutual relations between these two measures. The 50-year-old participants (n = 217–224) were drawn from the ongoing Finnish Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Personal and Social Development. For the SVS, the confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) supported the 14-factor structure: achievement, tradition, stimulation, hedonism, security, conformity, power, universalism (with sub-factors of societal concern, tolerance and protecting nature), benevolence (with sub-factors of caring and dependability) and self-direction (with sub-factors of autonomy of action and autonomy of thought). Using these 14 factors, the CFA confirmed the existence of higher-order factors with both two (person-focused and social-focused dimensions) and four factors (self-transcendence, self-enhancement, conservation and openness to change). In assessing personal life investments, three factors emerged using CFA: soul-searching (items of cognition, independence, life reflection and death), basic needs (sexuality, family and work) and pleasure (health, leisure and friends). The three PLI factors and 14 SVS items related to each other in some ways. For example, soul-searching correlated statistically significantly and positively with all three of universalism’s sub-factors (societal concern, tolerance, and protecting nature). Basic needs correlated positively with achievement and benevolence (dependability). Finally, pleasure correlated positively, for example, with benevolence (caring), and hedonism.


Values Personal life investment Factor structure Middle-age 



The preparation of this article was funded by the Academy of Finland through grants (118316 and 135347) awarded to Katja Kokko. We appreciate Professor Lea Pulkkinen’s contribution to the Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Personality and Social Development (JYLS) over the years, and the Academy of Finland’s grant (127125) awarded to her for the most recent data collection of the Jyväskylä Longitudinal Study of Personality and Social Development in 2009.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of JyväskyläJyväskyläFinland
  2. 2.Gerontology Research Center, Department of Health SciencesUniversity of JyväskyläJyväskyläFinland

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