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Trust in a High-concern Risk Controversy: A Comparison of Three Concepts

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A community survey examined factors affecting the trust of four groups involved in a high concern controversy over the risks posed by motor boats to the quality of a municipal water supply. In an effort at conceptual integration the survey results were used to examine the relationships between three concepts of trust. Perceived agreement in values between self and four controversy-involved groups was found to be the most powerful predictor of trust of all four groups, as expected by the salient value similarity perspective. "Fairness" and "competency," as expected by the "dimensions" of trust perspective were also found to be significant predictors of trust. However, judgments of "fairness" and "competency" were context specific as indicated by significant correlations with judgments of salient value similarity and self interests. This violates the assumption of universality of the "dimensions" of trust perspective. Judgments of similarity of values between self and the controversy-involved groups were significantly correlated to self interests. This indicates a conceptual overlap between the salient values similarities perspective and the encapsulated trust perspective.

Keywords: Trust; encapsulated trust; trust dimensions; value similarity

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA, USA 2: Tezukayama University, Nara-shi, Japan

Publication date: March 1, 2007

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