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Trust and Reciprocity in the Aftermath of Natural Disasters


  • David A. Fleming
  • Alberto Chong
  • Hern�n D. Bejarano


Beyond all the material and economic losses that natural disasters produce, post-disaster environments can alter the social capital of a community by affecting social norms, attitudes, and people's behaviour. To analyse this issue, we empirically investigate the effect that the aftermath of a disaster can have on trust and reciprocity of people within communities. We do this by comparing outcomes of trust games conducted in earthquake-affected and non-affected rural villages one year after the 2010 Chilean earthquake. Our findings show that while trust levels do not differ across cases, reciprocity is lower in earthquake-affected areas.

Suggested Citation

  • David A. Fleming & Alberto Chong & Hern�n D. Bejarano, 2014. "Trust and Reciprocity in the Aftermath of Natural Disasters," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(11), pages 1482-1493, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jdevst:v:50:y:2014:i:11:p:1482-1493
    DOI: 10.1080/00220388.2014.936395

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Andrabi, Tahir & Das, Jishnu, 2010. "In aid we trust : hearts and minds and the Pakistan earthquake of 2005," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5440, The World Bank.
    2. Adolfo Morrone & Noemi Tontoranelli & Giulia Ranuzzi, 2009. "How Good is Trust?: Measuring Trust and its Role for the Progress of Societies," OECD Statistics Working Papers 2009/3, OECD Publishing.
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    Cited by:

    1. John F. Helliwell & Haifang Huang & Shun Wang, 2016. "New Evidence on Trust and Well-being," NBER Working Papers 22450, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Victor Stephane, 2020. "Hiding Behind the Veil of Ashes: Social Capital in the Wake of Natural Disasters," Working Papers halshs-02901506, HAL.
    3. Chuang, Yating & Schechter, Laura, 2015. "Stability of experimental and survey measures of risk, time, and social preferences: A review and some new results," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 117(C), pages 151-170.
    4. Victor Stéphane, 2020. "Hiding Behind the Veil of Ashes: Social Capital in the Wake of Natural Disasters," Working Papers 2021, Groupe d'Analyse et de Théorie Economique Lyon St-Étienne (GATE Lyon St-Étienne), Université de Lyon.
    5. Sung Hoon Kang & Mark Skidmore, 2018. "The Effects of Natural Disasters on Social Trust: Evidence from South Korea," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 10(9), pages 1-16, August.
    6. Said, Farah & Afzal, Uzma & Turner, Ginger, 2015. "Risk taking and risk learning after a rare event: Evidence from a field experiment in Pakistan," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 118(C), pages 167-183.
    7. Bejarano, Hernan & Gillet, Joris & Lara, Ismael Rodríguez, 2020. "Trust and trustworthiness after negative random shocks," SocArXiv p4tw2, Center for Open Science.
    8. Asadul Islam & C. Matthew Leister & Minhaj Mahmud & Paul A. Raschky, 2020. "Natural disaster and risk-sharing behavior: Evidence from rural Bangladesh," Journal of Risk and Uncertainty, Springer, vol. 61(1), pages 67-99, August.

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