The article concerns the analysis of relationships between personal values and civic activity. The main hypotheses claims that individual's involvement in civic activities is determined by universalism and benevolence - two types of prosocial values defined in the S. Schwartz's model of personal values. The authors made use of the data derived form large international research European Social Survey. The results show that civic activity in Europe has certain common denominator, which consists of competence, effectiveness and efficiency. In most of the national communities quite strong effects of universalism have been revealed; and merely in two cases it was an effect of benevolence (Poland, Germany). The authors point at an existence of dissimilar models of the civic participation emerging in advanced democracies and in postcommunist countries (including Poland). It consist in fact, that in advanced democracy model one of the most important predictors of civic activity is the level of universalistic values acceptance, while in postcommunist countries universalism turned out to be meaningless factor.
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