Value Fulfillment from a Cybernetic Perspective: A New Psychological Theory of Well-Being

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2 Scopus citations


Value Fulfillment Theory (VFT) is a philosophical theory of well-being. Cybernetic Big Five Theory (CB5T) is a psychological theory of personality. Both start with a conception of the person as a goal-seeking (or value-pursuing) organism, and both take goals and the psychological integration of goals to be key to well-being. By joining VFT and CB5T, we produce a cybernetic value fulfillment theory in which we argue that well-being is best conceived as the fulfillment of psychologically integrated values. Well-being is the effective pursuit of a set of nonconflicting values that are emotionally, motivationally, and cognitively suitable to the person. The primary difference in our theory from other psychological theories of well-being is that it does not provide a list of intrinsic goods, instead emphasizing that each person may have their own list of intrinsic goods. We discuss the implications of our theory for measuring, researching, and improving well-being.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalPersonality and Social Psychology Review
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by a grant from the John Templeton Foundation, through the Genetics and Human Agency project.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Inc.


  • Cybernetic Big Five Theory
  • desire satisfaction
  • value fulfillment theory
  • well-being

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't


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