Historical Correlates of Social Trust
61 Pages Posted: 25 Apr 2011
Date Written: April 21, 2011
Much recent research suggests that social trust strongly affects economic and political behaviour, both at the individual and national level. This paper asks how deep the historical roots of social trust may be. Substantial evidence shows that trust has been persistent among American 2nd and 3rd generation immigrants. Other findings suggest that the roots of trust may be considerably deeper. Evidence using historical data indicates that present trust scores correlate well with even very old national characteristics. The paper concludes by discussing the importance of the findings for how societies develop.
Keywords: Z13, P16, N43
JEL Classification: Social trust, institutional quality, path dependence
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation