20+ Difference Between Collectivism And Individualism

The contrast between collectivism and individualism is that each philosophy emphasizes the importance of the group over the individual.

There are so many political philosophies out there that it’s hard to keep track of them; now, we have to contend with collectivism and individualism. If you ask someone about their political ideology, you can praise or criticize that person’s decision based on the situation. 

Instead of sorting through the various political philosophies, it is simpler to declare oneself a liberal or a moderate. That being said, things aren’t that simple.

To put it another way, we’re here to explain how the concept of individualism and collectivism differentiates different political philosophies. Collectivism vs. individuality is two words that convey the message.

Comparison between Collectivism and Individualism

DefinitionAn ideology known as collectivism is one that acknowledges that the importance of the collective as a whole is greater than the importance of the individuals that comprise the group.An ideology known as individualism holds the view that a person’s unique experiences and perspectives are more significant than those of a community or organization.
Value of peopleThe interests of the group, rather than those of the individual, are prioritized under the collectivist ideology.Individualism elevates the status of the individual above that of any grouping.
Decision-making powerDecisions are made by the collective when collectivism is practiced. The decision is made by the majority of the people in the group, even though there may be some people who do not agree with it.Individuals adhering to the individualist philosophy are the ones who make decisions. Although they may take into consideration the opinions of others, the choice ultimately rests with them.
PrivacyThere is no room for privacy in collectivism, which means that individuals are never by themselves.Individualism places high importance on one’s right to privacy.
IndependenceWhen it comes to collectivism, group consciousness comes first, and the importance of bonds and interactions between individuals is highlighted.People who subscribe to the individualist philosophy are very self-aware and independent.
AllianceUnder the collectivist ideology, friendship is based on one’s participation in several groups.Individualism sees friendship as one of the most fundamental requirements for a happy life.

Major Differences Between Collectivism And Individualism

What exactly is collectivism?

Collectivism emphasizes group cooperation over individual goals. It encourages group goals through long-term partnerships. In a collectivist society, individuals can easily sacrifice for the greater good. A collectivist may feel ashamed if praised individually.

According to a decision-making study, higher levels of collectivism make people more dependent and less likely to betray central grouping (Le Febvre & Franke, 2013). 

Traditional societies in Asia, Africa, and Latin America practice collectivism. It opposes North American, Western European, New Zealand, and Australian individualism.

Collectivism is a political ideology connected to communism that promotes giving authority to the full population instead of a few elites. Creating a structure that supports shared goals is beneficial. This goal is hard to achieve, as Soviet communism’s collectivist society showed.

Collectivism Key Differences

  1. People living in a collectivist society are more likely to be willing to forego their advancements in favor of the community’s overall development.
  2. While individualism emphasizes human autonomy and independence, collectivism places a premium on the cohesiveness of groups over pursuing personal goals.
  3. The concept of collectivism is very prevalent in the societies of Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
  4. Communism and collectivism are two sides of the same coin.
  5. Those with higher levels of collectivism are typically more dependent on the grouping and loyal to the members of that group.

What exactly is individualism?

Individualism is a political philosophy that emphasizes the individual’s dignity and the right to pursue one’s goals. It generally opposes external interference in matters of individual freedom.

It has been found that more individuals tend to make better decisions than those with a more group-oriented personality (Le Febvre & Franke, 2013). Individualism is prized in societies where people have a sense of self-determination. 

According to individualism, human restrictions cannot be imposed on them by religion or tradition. It defies the beliefs of collectivism, which emphasizes dependency and conventionality over individualism and freedom.

Pejorative: The phrase was first used in the context of political individualism, which maintains that the state should only protect an individual’s power to decide as they see fit so long as that individual respects the freedom of others. The original usage of the phrase was in the context of political individualism.

Individualism Key Differences

  • Individualism is generally opposed to having other people dictate one’s personal decisions and preferences.
  • There is a pattern of rising individualism worldwide, and it is likely related to a similarly rising pattern of socioeconomic progress.
  • North America, Western Europe, New Zealand, and Australia are the countries with the highest rates of individualism.
  • Individualism is frequently seen in conjunction with liberalism and anarchism.
  • Those who have higher levels of individualism have a greater tendency to be more reasonable in the decisions that they make.

Contrast Between Collectivism and Individualism


  • Collectivism- The ideology or behavior of giving collective cohesion a higher priority than the goals of individuals is known as collectivism.
  • Individualism- Individualism, on the other hand, is a value or political stance that places emphasis on the autonomy and independence of the human subject.


  • Collectivism- The maintenance of harmony and a devoted attitude toward one’s own grouping make up the essential components of collectivism.
  • Individualism- On the other side, those who subscribe to individualism value their own distinctness and independence.


  • Collectivism- Because it encourages making sacrifices for the benefit of society as a whole, collectivism is opposed to the pursuit of individual goals.
  • Individualism- In contrast, individualism rejects the notion that religious doctrine and cultural norms have the authority to restrict the actions of private citizens. It runs counter to the beliefs of collectivism, which place a premium on reliance on one another and conformity to established norms.

Practiced in

  • Collectivism- Traditional groups, such as those found in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, are known to exhibit a pattern of cultural behavior known as collectivism.
  • Individualism- It is the antithesis of individualism that is prevalent in places like the United States of America, Western Europe, New Zealand, and Australia. On the other hand, it has been noted that individuality is on the rise all over the world and that this trend is most likely connected to a concurrently expanding socioeconomic development.

Working principle

  • Collectivism- Collectivism is a political theory that is related to communism in the sense that it proposes that power should be placed in the hands of the citizens as a whole as opposed to the hands of only a few individuals, such as those in the upper class.

    This is because communism proposes that power should be placed in the hands of the working class. As a result, it is to everyone’s advantage to design a system that makes it easier to achieve common objectives.
  • Individualism- Individualism, on the other hand, is related to liberalism, which focuses importance on individual freedom and has done so, especially since the Enlightenment. Individualism is a form of liberalism.

    There is also a connection to anarchism, which is a political philosophy that opposes authoritarian forms of governance and advocates for greater personal autonomy.

Power lies with

  • Collectivism- According to the findings of a study on how decisions are made, people who have higher levels of collectivism tend to have more dependent personalities and have a lower likelihood of betraying members of the central groupings.
  • Individualism- Individuals who have higher levels of individualism have a greater tendency to be more sensible.


  • Collectivism- The ideals of collectivism are for all members of society to live in peace and accord with one another.
  • Individualism- Self-actualization, on the part of the individual, is the pinnacle of the individualist philosophy known as individualism.

Resource of data

  • Collectivism- Within the framework of collectivism, social networks serve as the major information resource.
  • Individualism- Under the individualist philosophy, the most important source of information is the media.

Gross Domestic Product

  • Collectivism- The average GDP per person is typically lower in collectivist societies.
  • Individualism- Individualism typically results in a higher GDP per person than collectivism does.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is socialism?

Marx defined socialism as a kind of government ownership of the means of production as well as the means of production itself.

To achieve a more egalitarian society, socialism advocates the premise that the public should own resources and production methods.

What is meant by communism?

At its core, communism advocates public ownership and collective control of a society’s primary production assets (such as mines, factories, and other factories) as well as the nation’s natural resources in place of private property rights and a profit-based economy.

What does capitalism mean?

Private actors own and control property according to their interests in capitalism, and supply and demand freely set market prices in a way that can serve society’s greatest interests.

It is a fundamental principle of capitalism that a company’s primary goal is to make money.

Who were the founders of socialism?

Robert Owen and Henri de Saint-Simon were two of the most prominent early socialist philosophers.

Welshman Owen, a leading proponent of socialist utopianism in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, was a manufacturer. On both sides of the Atlantic, he was active in communal experiments.

Born into a poor aristocratic French family, Saint-life Simon also spans the 18th and 19th centuries.

How are collectivism and individualism measured?

The Culture Orientation Scale can be used to gauge individualism and collectivism. A 16-point scale gauges how people regard themselves as part of a community or fully autonomous individuals.

They are also asked if they believe that all members of the group are equal or if there exists any form of inequality.

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