Trust, Ethnic Diversity, and Personal Contact: A Field Experiment

61 Pages Posted: 21 Feb 2019

See all articles by Henning Finseraas

Henning Finseraas

Norwegian Social Research

Torbjørn Hanson

FFI Kjeller

Åshild A. Johnsen

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) - School of Economics and Business

Andreas Kotsadam

University of Oslo - Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research

Gaute Torsvik

University of Bergen - Department of Economics; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

Date Written: 2019

Abstract

We study how close personal contact with minorities affects in-group and out-group trust in a field experiment in the armed forces. Soldiers are randomly assigned to rooms with or without ethnic minorities. At the end of the recruit period, we measure trust by using a trust game. Results indicate that close personal contact with minorities increases trust towards a generic immigrant. We replicate the result that individuals coming from more ethnically diverse areas trust minorities less, but random assignment to interact with minority soldiers removes this negative correlation. We conclude that social integration involving personal contact can reduce negative effects of ethnic diversity on trust.

Suggested Citation

Finseraas, Henning and Hanson, Torbjørn and Johnsen, Åshild A. and Kotsadam, Andreas and Torsvik, Gaute, Trust, Ethnic Diversity, and Personal Contact: A Field Experiment (2019). CESifo Working Paper No. 7515. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3338922

Henning Finseraas (Contact Author)

Norwegian Social Research ( email )

Munthesgt. 29, N-0260
Oslo
Norway

Torbjørn Hanson

FFI Kjeller ( email )

Norway

Åshild A. Johnsen

Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) - School of Economics and Business ( email )

P.O. Box 5003
NO-1432 Aas
Norway

Andreas Kotsadam

University of Oslo - Ragnar Frisch Centre for Economic Research ( email )

Gaustadalleen 21
N-0317 Oslo
Norway

Gaute Torsvik

University of Bergen - Department of Economics ( email )

Fosswinckelsgt. 6
N-5007 Bergen, 5007
Norway
55589225 (Phone)
55589210 (Fax)

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute for Economic Research)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

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