The Identity Resilience Index: Development and Validation in Two UK Samples

Glynis M. Breakwell, Emanuele Fino, Rusi Jaspal

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Identity resilience is conceptualized in Identity Process Theory as a relatively stable self-schema, akin to a trait. Identity resilience is said to be high when individuals perceive their identity to be characterized by a high overall combined rating of their self-efficacy, self-esteem, continuity and distinctiveness. People reporting higher identity resilience respond more favorably to, and cope more effectively with, events and situations that question or threaten their identity. The Identity Resilience Index (IRI) is a 16-item self-report measure of identity resilience. Confirmatory factor analysis was performed on data from 465 participants in two studies in the United Kingdom who completed the IRI and the Positive Affect Scale. Results revealed a second-order factor model in which every item loaded onto one of four first-order identity dimensions (self-esteem, self-efficacy, continuity and distinctiveness) and indicated these four first-order dimensions loaded onto a higher-order identity factor (identity resilience). Overall, we found no statistically significant differences on the IRI by population (general vs. gay men). The IRI correlated positively with the Positive Affect Scale, suggesting good concurrent validity.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 29 Sept 2021

Bibliographical note

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (, which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.


  • Identity resilience
  • continuity
  • distinctiveness
  • identity
  • identity process theory
  • scale validation
  • self-efficacy
  • self-esteem


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