Identity configurations across love and work in emerging adults in romantic relationships

Koen Luyckx, Inge Seiffge-Krenke, Seth J. Schwartz, Elisabetta Crocetti, Theo A. Klimstra

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

69 Citations (Scopus)


Love and work constitute two life-defining identity domains for emerging adults. The present study utilized a five-dimensional identity model and examined identity configurations across these two domains, capturing the degree to which identity statuses correspond across domains. A sample of German 18–30-year-olds who were either working or studying and engaged in a romantic relationship was assessed at baseline and three years later. Six identity clusters emerged in each domain. Combining identity clusters across love and work domains, 7 identity configurations were distinguished. Whereas some configurations were characterized by strong commitments in one or both domains, other configurations consisted of individuals scoring low on commitment and high on exploration and rumination. These configurations were differentially related to psychological symptoms, work stress and satisfaction, and family–work conflict, both concurrently and longitudinally. Individuals characterized by high commitments in love and work provided the most favorable responses on all outcomes.
Keywords: Identity, Exploration, Work, Partnership, Configurations, Emerging adulthood
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)192-203
JournalJournal of Applied Developmental Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Identity
  • Exploration
  • Work
  • Partnership
  • Configurations
  • Emerging adulthood


Dive into the research topics of 'Identity configurations across love and work in emerging adults in romantic relationships'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this