Creating Overall Measurements of Unidimensional Constructs for Comparative Research: A Methodological Study

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Standardization of measurement is a prerequisite for cross-national and/or overtime comparative analyses. However, there are instances in the literature where the validation of constructs resulted in producing scales or subscales defined differently from the proposed theoretical structure and across countries. In this paper, we propose an empirical methodology that provides standardized overall measurements of unidimensional constructs to be used in cross-national and overtime comparative research. Initially, the inclusion of items for further analyses is investigated at country level and overtime. The common items are to define the overall measurements and their structure is validated. Based on the Confirmatory factor analyses results, their psychometric properties are assessed. To demonstrate the implementation of the suggested methodology and facilitate practical applications, we use the human values measurements included in the European Social Survey questionnaire for Southern Europe, 2002-2018. Moreover, in order to show how these measurements may be used in further analyses, their association to subjective life satisfaction, happiness and general health are also presented.


This article was added to the Knowledge Bank in January, 2023.


comparative research, confirmatory factor analysis, validity, reliability, European Social Survey


Ask: Research and Methods. Volume 30, Issue 1 (2021), pp. 25-56