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Perceived injustice in unified Germany and mental health. Partial primary data from the first wave of the study "Justice as a Problem within Reunified Germany".

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Schmitt, Manfred

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Dataset Information

Title Perceived injustice in unified Germany and mental health. Partial primary data from the first wave of the study "Justice as a Problem within Reunified Germany".
Original Title Wahrgenommene Ungerechtigkeit im wiedervereinigten Deutschland und seelische Gesundheit. Auszug der Primrdaten aus der ersten Erhebungswelle des Projekts "Gerechtigkeit als innerdeutsches Problem".
Citation Schmitt, M. (2004). Perceived injustice in unified Germany and mental health. Partial primary data from the first wave of the study "Justice as a Problem within Reunified Germany". [Translated Title] (Version 1) [Files on CD-ROM]. Trier: Center for Research Data in Psychology: PsychData of the Leibniz Institute for Psychology Information ZPID. https://doi.org/10.5160/psychdata.stmd96ge05
Language of variable documentation German
Responsible for Data Collection Schmitt, Manfred
Data Collection Completion Date 1996
Dataset Publication 2004
Dataset ID stmd96ge05
Study Description A clear disparity has been identified in the inner-German situation following reunification in the average quality of living conditions from West to East. For many citizens this raises the question as to the fairness of this situation, whose end is uncertain. Building on the psychology of fairness, the constructs of perceived privilege and perceived deprivation were studied longitudinally. Dispositional attitudes and values are considered, together with specific views on the situation of German distribution of wealth/good, their causes, and possible changes, all of which lead to perceived injustices. Along these theoretical lines it is investigated which types of emotions and the willingness to take action are promoted as well as how life satisfaction and mental health are correlated with these variables. The main interest was the relationships between the objective changes in the domestic distribution situation in Germany and the subjective perceptions of these changes on the part of German citizens. Three surveys were conducted in 2-year intervals. A section of the primary data which was collected for the first time of in 1996 is documented here. This section was chosen so that the results of an international publication (Schmitt, M. & Maes, J., 1998) could be considered and alternative assessments could be made.
Hypotheses -
Keyphrase perceived living conditions & their justice in western Germany vs eastern Germany, well-being & mental health & quality of working life & emotions, empirical study, 2534 german subjects, primary data
Funding German Research Foundation
Rating Reliabilities (internal consistencies: Cronbach's alpha): Perceived East-West difference .74, Wheelchair East-West differences .91, Perceived changes in the East .82, Perceived changes in the West .84, Assumed changes in the East .90, Presumed changes in the West .89, Life satisfaction between .73 and .99 (depending on Range, Depression .91, Self-esteem .84, and Mental Health .90)
A quantitative description of the validity of the measuring instruments is neither possible nor useful. There are numerous validation criteria for each level which are theoretically derived but located in theoretically different distances to the validating variable. According to the findings, which broadly coincide with theoretical expectations, the validity of all measurements is deemed satisfactory to very good.

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PSYNDEX Classification and Controlled Terms

Classification Motivation & Emotion
Social Processes & Social Issues
Social Perception & Cognition
Controlled Terms Justice
Political Attitudes
Emotions
Life Satisfaction
Mental Health
Self-Esteem
Data Collection

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Research Method Description

Research Method Description Questionnaire Data
Classification of Data Collection Fully Standardized Survey Instrument (provides question formulation and answer options)
Research Instrument The survey instrument consists partly of self-constructed instruments. Some modifications or sections of standardized measuring instruments were used. All answers were recorded with rating scales, though depending on the instrument between 4-7 response alternatives were available.
The core variables collected with the self-constructed instruments included differential perceptions, difference justice, retrospective changes in the East and the West, future changes to employment and occupation in the East and the West, as well as emotions surrounding the professional quality of life in a reunified Germany. The considerations which led to the formulation of the relevant items can be found in Schmitt, Maes & Narrow (1995).
Life satisfaction was measured using standardized measuring instruments (measured with an extended and modified version of the questionnaire on life satisfaction from Fahrenberg, Myrtek, Wilk & Kreutel, 1986).
Depression was measured with a simplified German version of the Beck Depression Inventory from Schmitt & Maes (2000).
Self-esteem was measured with a German version of the Rosenberg Self Esteem Scale by Rosenberg (1965).
Mental health was measured using the SG scale of the Trier Personality Questionnaire from Becker (1989).
Data Collection Method Data collection in the absence of an experimenter
- Mail Survey
Time Points single measurement
Survey Time Period January 1996
Characteristics -
Population East and West Germans in a reunified Germany
Experimental Pool Individuals
Sample 3 recruitment strategies
(1) Geographically stratified random sample taken from the population register
(2) Geographically stratified random sample taken from the electronic telephone book
(3) Volunteers found via geographically targeted advertisements placed in the press. Detailed description of the sampling in Schmal, Maes & Schmidt (1996)
Subject Recruitment Recruitment was done via registration offices from selected municipalities, newspaper advertisements and press releases, as well as using the electronic telephone book. In total, approximately 25,000 people were contacted with the request to participate in the study. 2,345 people expressed interest. A further 700 people who volunteered through targeted advertisements and press releases were given the questionnaires directly.
Sample Size 2,534 individuals
Return/Drop Out The 79.9% response rate was slightly higher than in comparable studies.
Gender Distribution 40,3% female subjects (n=1020)
59,6% male subjects (n=1511)
Age Distribution 14-88 years
Special Groups East and West German comparisons
Country Germany
Region -
City -
Variables Demographic variables: gender, age, place of residence (East Germany, West Germany, emigrants of different variants)
Psychological variables were measured with self-constructed instruments:
Attitude to political parties (CDU, CSU, SPD, Bndnis90/The Greens, FDP, PDS, Republicans)
Attitudes toward reunification
Perceived East-West differences in 9 components of professional quality of life:
1. Job
2. Job security (permanent positions)
3. The quality of equipment in the workplace
4. Atmosphere at the workplace
5. Quality of vocational education and training
6. Pay
7. Chance for job advancement
8. Range of company benefits
9. Consideration of workers' interests
Justified East-West differences in 9 components of professional quality of life
Perceived changes (improvements, deteriorations) in 9 components of professional quality of life in the East since reunification
Perceived changes (improvements, deteriorations) in 9 components of professional quality of life in the West since the reunification
Projected changes (improvements, deteriorations) in the next 3 years in 9 components of professional quality of life in the East
Projected changes (improvements, deteriorations) in the next 3 years in 9 components of professional quality of life in the West
Expression of 13 emotions related to the professional quality of life in reunified Germany:
1. Sympathy for people from other parts of Germany
2. Guilt because of the better quality of life in their own part of Germany
3. Anger at and blame for the others' less-favorable living situation
4. Fear of quality of life deterioration in own region
5. Gratitude for the good quality of life in own region
6. Proud of the good quality of life in own region
7. Self-pity due to the bad situation in own region
8. Outrage over East-West differences
9. Shame due to lack of initiative in others
10. Hope of help from the people in the other region
11. Envy of the people in the other region
12. Admiration of the people from the other region
13. Hopelessness regarding the situation in their own region
Psychological variables were collected using standardized measuring instruments:
Life satisfaction, depression, self-esteem, mental health

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Data Status

Data Status Data Set Excerpt
Original Records Questionnaire filled out by either the subject or the experimenter containing closed and/or open answers
Transformation The original records were entirely transferred into a data matrix using simple coding rules. This data matrix is provided (stmd96ge05_rd), as well as the code book (stmd96ge05_kb).
Broader unit instructions are not given.

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Description of the Provided Data

Description Primary data set
File Name stmd96ge05_pd.txt
Data Content 2,534 subjects, 176 variables
Data Points 2,534*176=445,984 data points
Variables Demographic variables (3), Attitude toward political parties (7), Attitude toward reunification (1), Perceived East-West differences in professional quality of life (9), Justified East-West difference in professional quality of life (9), Perceived changes in professional quality of life in the East since reunification (9), Perceived changes in the professional quality of life in the West since reunification (9), Assumed changes in the next 3 years in professional quality of life in the East (9), Assumed changes in the next 3 years in professional quality of life in the West (9), Emotions related to professional quality of life in reunified Germany (13), Life satisfaction (47), Depression (22), Self-esteem (10), Mental Health (19)
MD5 Hash def01bedc8d667235f1aa311c4d4c00f
  

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Description of Additional Materials

Description File Name
German codebook of primary data set stmd96ge05_pd.txt stmd96ge05_kb.txt

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Publications Directly Related to the Dataset

Publications Directly Related to the Dataset
Schmitt, M. & Maes, J. (1998). Perceived injustice in unified Germany and mental health. Social Justice Research, 11, 59-78.Datensatz 0124650

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Utilized Test Methods

Utilized Test Methods
Becker, P. (1989). Trierer Persnlichkeitsfragebogen (TPF). Gttingen: Hogrefe. Datensatz 9001475
Fahrenberg, J., Myrtek, M., Wilk, D. & Kreutel, K. (1986). Multimodale Erfassung der Lebenszufriedenheit: Eine Untersuchung an Koronarkranken. Psychotherapie und Medizinische Psychologie, 36, 347-354. Datensatz 0021488
Rosenberg, M. (1965). Society and the adolescent self-image. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Schmitt, M. & Maes, J. (2000). Vorschlag zur Vereinfachung des Beck-Depressions-Inventars (BDI). Diagnostica, 46, 38-46. Datensatz 0136455

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Further Reading

Further Reading
Maes, J. & Schmitt, M. (1999). More on ultimate and immament justice: Results from the research project "Justice as a Problem within Reunified Germany". Social Justice Research, 12, 65-78.
Maes, J. & Schmitt, M. (2000). Psychosoziales Problemverhalten und Vergangenheitsverklrung im wiedervereinigten Deutschland. Psychosozial, 23 (2), 85-96.Datensatz 0138478
Maes, J., Schmitt, M. & Seiler, U. (1999a). Ungerechtigkeiten im wiedervereinigten Deutschland und psychosomatisches Wohlbefinden. In A. Hessel, M. Geyer & E. Brhler (Hrsg.), Gewinne und Verluste sozialen Wandels (S. 182-199). Stuttgart: Enke.Datensatz 0121931
Maes, J., Schmitt, M. & Seiler, U. (1999b). Wer wnscht die Mauer zurck? Das menschliche Klima in Deutschland und seine Folgen. In H. Berth & E. Brhler (Hrsg.), Deutsch-deutsche Vergleiche (S. 28-43). Berlin: Verlag Wissenschaft und Forschung.Datensatz 0135637
Maes, J., Schmitt, M. & Seiler, U. (1999c): Zukunft Mensch im vereinigten Deutschland aus der Sicht von Ostdeutschen und Westdeutschen. In G. Krampen, H. Zayer, W. Schnpflug & G. Richardt (Hrsg.), Beitrge zur angewandten Psychologie 1999: Zukunft Mensch - die Republik im Umbruch (S. 399-402). Bonn: Deutscher Psychologen Verlag.Datensatz 0137170
Maes, J., Schmitt, M. & Seiler, U. (2000). Politischer Konservatismus und der Glaube an Gerechtigkeit. Zeitschrift fr politische Psychologie, 8, 39-53.Datensatz 0138647
Schmal, A., Maes, J. & Schmitt, M. (1996). Gerechtigkeit als innerdeutsches Problem: Untersuchungsplan und Stichprobe (Berichte aus der Arbeitsgruppe "Verantwortung, Gerechtigkeit, Moral" Nr. 96). Trier: Universitt Trier, Fachbereich I - Psychologie.Datensatz 0127642
Schmitt, M. & Janetzko, E. (1993). Verantwortlichkeitsberzeugungen bei Ost- und Westdeutschen. In G. Trommsdorff (Hrsg.), Psychologische Aspekte des sozio-politischen Wandels in Ostdeutschland (S. 169-179). Berlin: Walter de Gruyter.
Schmitt, M. & Maes, J. (2002). Stereotypic ingroup bias as self-defense against relative deprivation: Evidence from a longitudinal study of the German unification process. European Journal of Social Psychology, 32, 309-326.Datensatz 0153250
Schmitt, M. & Montada, L. (1999b). Psychologische, soziologische und arbeitswissenschaftliche Analysen der Transformation nach der deutschen Wiedervereinigung. In M. Schmitt & L. Montada (Hrsg.), Gerechtigkeitserleben im wiedervereinigten Deutschland (S. 7-18). Opladen: Leske + Budrich.Datensatz 0120732
Schmitt, M. & Montada, L. (Hrsg.). (1999a). Gerechtigkeitserleben im wiedervereinigten Deutschland. Opladen: Leske + Budrich.Datensatz 0120732
Schmitt, M. (1998). Gerechtigkeit und Solidaritt im wiedervereinigten Deutschland. In B. Reichle & M. Schmitt (Hrsg.), Verantwortung, Gerechtigkeit und Moral (S. 87-98). Weinheim: Juventa.Datensatz 0119711
Schmitt, M., Maes, J. & Schmal, A. (1995). Gerechtigkeit als innerdeutsches Problem: Kernvariablen. (Berichte aus der Arbeitsgruppe "Verantwortung, Gerechtigkeit, Moral" Nr.83). Trier: Universitt Trier, Fachbereich I - Psychologie.Datensatz 0099614
Schmitt, M., Maes, J. & Schmal, A. (1999). Ungerechtigkeitserleben im Vereinigungsproze: Folgen fr das emotionale Befinden und die seelische Gesundheit. In M. Schmitt & L. Montada (Hrsg.), Gerechtigkeitserleben im wiedervereinigten Deutschland (S. 169-212). Opladen: Leske + Budrich.Datensatz 0128672
Schmitt, M., Maes, J. & Seiler, U. (1999a). Fllt die Mauer in den Kpfen der Deutschen? Eine Lngsschnittuntersuchung zum Wandel der sozialen Identitt Ost- und Westdeutscher. In G. Krampen, H. Zayer, W. Schnpflug & G. Richardt (Hrsg.), Beitrge zur angewandten Psychologie 1999: Zukunft Mensch - die Republik im Umbruch (S. 402-405). Bonn: Deutscher Psychologen Verlag.Datensatz 0137170
Schmitt, M., Maes, J. & Seiler, U. (1999b). Selbstabgrenzungen - Wandel und Funktion im Transformationsproze. Report Psychologie, 24(11-12), 9-10.
Schmitt, M., Maes, J. & Seiler, U. (1999c). Soziale Identitt als Gradmesser der menschlichen Annherung im wiedervereinigten Deutschland. In H. Berth & E. Brhler (Hrsg.), Deutsch-deutsche Vergleiche (160-174). Berlin: Verlag Wissenschaft und Forschung.Datensatz 0135644
Schmitt, M., Maes, J. & Seiler, U. (2001). Zur Mequivalenz und strukturellen Invarianz von Indikatoren der seelischen Gesundheit bei Ost- und Westdeutschen. Zeitschrift fr Differentielle und Diagnostische Psychologie, 21, 87-99.Datensatz 0146726
Seiler, U., Maes, J. & Schmitt, M. (1999a). Korrelate und Facetten des Nationalgefhls. Zeitschrift fr politische Psychologie, 7 (Sonderheft/99), 121-136.Datensatz 0130558
Seiler, U., Maes, J. & Schmitt, M. (1999b). Unterschiedliche Freizeitmuster in den alten und neuen Bundeslndern. In G. Krampen, H. Zayer, W. Schnpflug & G. Richardt (Hrsg.), Beitrge zur angewandten Psychologie 1999: Zukunft Mensch - die Republik im Umbruch (S. 657-659). Bonn: Deutscher Psychologen Verlag.Datensatz 0137170

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