The Optimal Trust in Government

Eastern Economic Journal, 2001

32 Pages Posted: 23 Jan 2015

See all articles by J. R. Clark

J. R. Clark

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Dwight Lee

University of Georgia - C. Herman and Mary Virginia Terry College of Business - Department of Economics

Date Written: January 1, 2001

Abstract

Public trust in government to promote the general interest has declined sharply since the early 1960s. Almost all those commenting on the trend see it as detrimental to government's ability to perform. We recognize that up to some level, trust does improve government performance, but beyond that level additional trust harms government performance by giving too much latitude to organized interest groups. Making use of the model of expressive voter behavior, we develop a model of the optimal trust in government, and consider how trust should vary over different political levels, and might cycle over time.

Suggested Citation

Clark, Jeff R. and Lee, Dwight, The Optimal Trust in Government (January 1, 2001). Eastern Economic Journal, 2001 . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2553500

Jeff R. Clark (Contact Author)

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga ( email )

Department of Economics
Suite 313 Fletcher Hall
Chattanooga, TN 37403-2598
United States

Dwight Lee

University of Georgia - C. Herman and Mary Virginia Terry College of Business - Department of Economics ( email )

Athens, GA 30602-6254
United States

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