Dynamic Trust Processes: Trust Dissolution and Restoration

Posted: 21 May 2010 Last revised: 22 Jun 2013

See all articles by Ashley Fulmer

Ashley Fulmer

National University of Singapore (NUS)

Michele Joy Gelfand

University of Maryland

Date Written: June 25, 2010


Trust has been conceptualized as a dynamical process that constitutes multiple stages. However, little research has examined multiple trust phases sequentially and delineated the dynamic and nonlinear patterns of trust changes over time. In this research, we examined trust trajectories in two phases after violation: trust dissolution and trust restoration. In addition, we examined how the individual differences of collectivistic self-construal and group identification, as well as the situational variables of partner’s group membership (ingroup vs. outgroup) and violation magnitude moderate the relationship between violation and changes in trust level and trajectories across the trust phases. To address these research questions, we adopted an economic game methodology - the Investment Game (Berg, Dickhaut, & McCabe, 1995) - which allows repeated measures of trust. Our results revealed the black sheep effect in trust dynamics, where collectivists high on group identification became less trusting after experiencing a large violation from an ingroup rather than an outgroup partner. Implications for future research and intercultural collaboration/negotiation are discussed.

Keywords: trust, violation, trust repair, ingroup and outgroup dynamics, collectivism

Suggested Citation

Fulmer, Ashley and Gelfand, Michele Joy, Dynamic Trust Processes: Trust Dissolution and Restoration (June 25, 2010). IACM 23rd Annual Conference Paper. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1612497 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1612497

Ashley Fulmer (Contact Author)

National University of Singapore (NUS) ( email )

1E Kent Ridge Road
NUHS Tower Block Level 7
Singapore, 119228

Michele Joy Gelfand

University of Maryland ( email )

1142 Biology-Psychology Building
College Park, MD 0742-4411
United States
301 405 6972 (Phone)

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