The Relation between Interpersonal and Institutional Trust in European Countries: Which Came First?
Henryk Domański 1  
,   Artur Pokropek 1  
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Institute of Philosophy and Sociology, Polish Academy of Sciences
Submission date: 2020-07-02
Acceptance date: 2021-01-11
Publication date: 2021-03-22
Polish Sociological Review 2021;213(1):87–102
Numerous studies into the links between interpersonal trust and confidence in state institutions have been conducted since Putnam made the study of trust popular in the early 1990s. As might be expected, both interpersonal and institutional trust tend to be strongly correlated at the individual and the aggregate country level. However, there have been no attempts to determine whether (i) interpersonal trust results from trust in political institutions, (ii) whether the reverse is the case—confidence in government is a precondition for the development of individual trust, or (iii) there are purely reciprocal associations between these attitudes that would appear empirically as a lack of causality. Using data from the European Social Survey 2010 we test these three possibilities using a recursive model