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Unformatted text preview: Investigating the Dynamics of Trust in Government: Drivers and Effects of Policy Initiatives and Government Action 1 Ignacio J. Martinez-Moyano 2 Michael E. Samsa Thomas E. Baldwin Bradford J. Willke Andrew P. Moore [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] [email protected] Decision and Information Sciences Division Argonne National Laboratory 9700 South Cass Avenue, Bldg. 900 Argonne, IL 60439 Software Engineering Institute Carnegie Mellon University 4500 Fifth Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15213 Introduction Governments face important challenges today, including the erosion of the social systems, terrorist activities, and global warming. In order to be successful, governments must have support from its citizens in the form of confidence and trust. (For a review of the literature, see Blind, 2007.) Because “trust is an important barometer of public satisfaction with government, and has important electoral consequences” (Keele, 2005, p. 884) and because “low trust helps create a political environment in which it is more difficult for leaders to succeed” (Hetherington, 1998, p. 791), understanding the dynamics of trust in government seems central for determining the ways to generate government actions that lead to adequate government performance. Building on the work by Baldwin, Ramaprasad, and Samsa (2006), which examines the components of public confidence in government as they relate to prevention of terrorist attacks, we create a framework for understanding the dynamics of trust in government and how these influence policy initiatives, government actions, and, ultimately, outcomes observed by the public. Following the rationale presented in the literature (Keele, 2005, 2007), we hypothesize that people’s trust (or distrust) in government has a direct effect on the success of the government’s initiatives. Similar to the work of Cook and Gronke (2005b), we conceptualize a trust continuum from low to high in which the population falls in a normally distributed fashion under normal circumstances (see...
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This note was uploaded on 04/05/2010 for the course POL 3232 taught by Professor What during the Spring '10 term at Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.

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