Does (National) Religiosity Ease the Psychological Burden of Lower SES?

Research question/goal: 

Lower socioeconomic status (SES; here: lower income, education, and job prestige) is a burden on people’s psychological well-being. For long, this burden was assumed to vanish with nations’ increasing economic development. Recent findings, however, suggest that economic development does not alleviate the burden; in fact, lower SES predicts lower well-being more strongly in economically developed nations than less economically developed ones. Our preliminary research (Berkessel, et al., 2021) found that national religiosity may explain this effect: Economically developed nations are less religious and, therefore, lack religious norms that buffer the negative consequences of lower SES and cast a bad light on higher SES. The proposed project examines which conditions need to be met for national religiosity to lighten the psychological burden of lower SES (WP1), which religious and emotional processes underlie this effect (WP2), and how the strength of this effect develops over time in the face of a dynamically changing religious landscape (WP3).

Fact sheet

Duration: 
2022 to 2027
Status: 
planned
Data Sources: 
large-scale cross-cultural survey data, experimental data, large-scale longitudinal survey data
Geographic Space: 
worldwide

Publications