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Do strong family ties inhibit trust?

  • Ermisch, John
  • Gambetta, Diego

We provide direct evidence that people with strong family ties have a lower level of trust in strangers than people with weak family ties, and argue that this association is causal. We also investigate the mechanisms that underlie this effect, and provide evidence that these revolve around the level of outward exposure: factors that limit exposure limit subjects’ experience as well as motivation to deal with strangers. Our findings are based on experimental data derived from a new design of the ‘trust game’ combined with panel survey data, both drawn from a near-representative sample of the British population.

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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.

Volume (Year): 75 (2010)
Issue (Month): 3 (September)
Pages: 365-376

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:75:y:2010:i:3:p:365-376
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  1. Alberto F. Alesina & Paola Giuliano, 2009. "Family Ties and Political Participation," NBER Working Papers 15415, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Michèle Belot & John Ermisch, 2009. "Friendship ties and geographical mobility: evidence from Great Britain," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 172(2), pages 427-442.
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  5. Belot, Michèle & Ermisch, John, 2006. "Friendship Ties and Geographical Mobility: Evidence from the BHPS," IZA Discussion Papers 2209, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  9. Dean S. Karlan, 2005. "Using Experimental Economics to Measure Social Capital and Predict Financial Decisions," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(5), pages 1688-1699, December.
  10. John Ermisch & Diego Gambetta & Heather Laurie & Thomas Siedler & S. C. Noah Uhrig, 2009. "Measuring people's trust," Journal of the Royal Statistical Society Series A, Royal Statistical Society, vol. 172(4), pages 749-769.
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  13. Ermisch, John & Gambetta, Diego, 2006. "People's Trust: The Design of a Survey-based Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 2216, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  14. Iris Bohnet & Fiona Greig & Benedikt Herrmann & Richard Zeckhauser, 2008. "Betrayal Aversion: Evidence from Brazil, China, Oman, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United States," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(1), pages 294-310, March.
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  16. Annette Jäckle & Emanuela Sala & Stephen P. Jenkins & Peter Lynn, 2005. "Validation of Survey Data on Income and Employment: The ISMIE Experience," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 488, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
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  18. Iris Bohnet & Heike Harmgart & Steffen Huck & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2005. "Learning Trust," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 322-329, 04/05.
  19. Bellemare, Charles & Kröger, Sabine, 2004. "On Representative Social Capital," IZA Discussion Papers 1145, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  20. Dean S. Karlan, 2005. "Using Experimental Economics to Measure Social Capital And Predict Financial Decisions," Working Papers 909, Economic Growth Center, Yale University.
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  23. Berg Joyce & Dickhaut John & McCabe Kevin, 1995. "Trust, Reciprocity, and Social History," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 10(1), pages 122-142, July.
  24. Aviv Nevo & Adam M. Rosen, 2012. "Identification With Imperfect Instruments," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(3), pages 659-671, August.
  25. Paola Sapienza & Anna Toldra‐Simats & Luigi Zingales, 2013. "Understanding Trust," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 123(12), pages 1313-1332, December.
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  27. Abigail Barr, 2003. "Trust and expected trustworthiness: experimental evidence from zimbabwean villages," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 113(489), pages 614-630, 07.
  28. Peter Morrison, 1971. "Chronic movers and the future redistribution of population: A longitudinal analysis," Demography, Springer;Population Association of America (PAA), vol. 8(2), pages 171-184, May.
  29. Bellemare, Charles & Kröger, Sabine, 2003. "On Representative Trust," SFB 373 Discussion Papers 2003,27, Humboldt University of Berlin, Interdisciplinary Research Project 373: Quantification and Simulation of Economic Processes.
  30. Ernst Fehr & Bettina Rockenbach, 2003. "Detrimental effects of sanctions on human altruism," Microeconomics 0305007, EconWPA.
  31. McCabe, Kevin A. & Rigdon, Mary L. & Smith, Vernon L., 2003. "Positive reciprocity and intentions in trust games," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 52(2), pages 267-275, October.
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