Trust in Trade: Studying the Causal Role of Trust on Public Support for Free Trade in a Field Survey Experiment

45 Pages Posted: 27 Nov 2013

Date Written: November 25, 2013

Abstract

While most explanations of individual trade policy preferences center on the re-distributional implications of trade, recent research is particularly interested in the role of non-economic determinants. We join the latter line of work by studying the effect of a fundamental socio-psychological determinant of trade preferences: generalized social trust. The hypothesized causal effect of social trust is tested in a field survey experiment that combines a voluntary contribution game with a survey. The empirical work was carried out in Hanoi, Vietnam. The findings offer robust support for the argument that social trust has a positive causal effect on public support for international trade.

Keywords: trade liberalization, social trust, public opinion, survey experiment, voluntary contribution game, Vietnam

Suggested Citation

Nguyen, Quynh and Bernauer, Thomas, Trust in Trade: Studying the Causal Role of Trust on Public Support for Free Trade in a Field Survey Experiment (November 25, 2013). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2359342 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2359342

Quynh Nguyen (Contact Author)

ETH Zurich ( email )

Center for Comparative and International Studies
IFW, Haldeneggsteig 4, C43.1
Zürich, 8092
Switzerland

Thomas Bernauer

ETH Zurich ( email )

Center for Comparative and International Studies
Building IFW, office 45.1, Haldeneggsteig 4
Zurich 8092, 8092
Switzerland
+41 44 632 6466 (Phone)
+41 44 632 1289 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.ib.ethz.ch

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