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Social Comparison

General scientific definition

Individuals determine their own social and personal worth based on how they stack up against others. By comparing themselves with others their motivation increases or decreases. Changes in the comparison group and/new information about this comparison group may lead to better or worse outcomes. 

Relevant substantive theories

Social comparison theory (Festinger)


  • Festinger L. (1954) A theory of social comparison processes. Human Relations. ;7(2):117-140. doi:10.1177/001872675400700202


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