Institutional Conditions for the Creation of Moralistic Trust

Tuesday, 12 July 2016: 16:54
Location: Hörsaal 27 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Hiroko OSAKI, Seikei University, Japan
Tatsuro SAKANO, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan
This study investigates the effects of individual’s evaluation of political-institutional conditions on the moralistic aspects of generalized trust. In studies of social capital, institutional conditions are considered to be one of the main determinants of generalized trust. With the knowledge that institutions can impose sanctions on untrustworthy behavior, people trust others as rational choice. However institutional conditions influence not only the rational aspect of generalized trust. Institutions also produce habits and norms, and make people inherently trustworthy through socialization mechanisms. This leads to create moralistic aspect of generalized trust, which is beyond rational prediction. Specifically, institutional conditions such as the fairness of police and legal system and the achievement of social equality are considered to be the determinants of moralistic trust. These theories have not been empirically tested hitherto, since previous studies did not differentiate rational and moralistic aspects in measuring generalized trust.

Therefore this study differentiate two aspects of generalized trust, and examine the effects of the confidences in police and legal system and the evaluation of social equality on two aspects of generalized trust. We use the data of Japanese internet survey conducted in 2011(sample size=1,137).

From the results of regression analyses, first, we find that while the confidences in police and legal system promote both rational and moralistic trust, the evaluation of social equality increase only moralistic trust. Second, there is a negative interaction effect between these two predictors on moralistic trust. This result suggests that the evaluation of social equality further promote moralistic trust when people have little confidences in police and legal system.