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Competitiveness Among Japanese, Chinese, And American Undergraduate Students

John M. Houston, Paul B. Harris, Robert Moore, Rebecca Brummett, Hideki Kametani

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Although research indicates that competitiveness, defined as the desire to win in interpersonal situations, is an important individual difference that influences a range of social interactions, little research has focused on competitiveness in cultures outside the United States. This study investigated competitiveness in three cultures by comparing Chinese ( n = 61), Japanese ( n = 232), and American ( n = 161) undergraduate college students. Nationality and sex were compared on two scales of the revised Competitiveness Index. Analysis indicated that American students scored higher on Enjoyment of Competitiveness than Chinese and Japanese students, but no difference was found on Contentiousness. Men scored higher than women on Enjoyment of Competition but not on Contentiousness. The findings indicate that sex and cultural patterns influence some but not all aspects of competitiveness.