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Trust Drives Internet Use


  • Martin Ljunge

    (Department of Economics, University of Copenhagen)


This paper estimates the effect of trust on internet use by studying the general population as well as second generation immigrants in 29 European countries with ancestry in 87 nations. There is a significant positive effect of trust on internet use. The positive trust effect is not universal to all media, as individuals with high trust are shown to consume less television. The finding provides evidence for one mechanism through which trust creates good outcomes. Individuals with high trust spend time online, and eschew the isolation of the TV couch, which may produce more productive opportunities.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Ljunge, 2012. "Trust Drives Internet Use," Discussion Papers 12-09, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:kud:kuiedp:1209

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Yann Algan & Pierre Cahuc, 2010. "Inherited Trust and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(5), pages 2060-2092, December.
    2. Erzo F. P. Luttmer & Monica Singhal, 2011. "Culture, Context, and the Taste for Redistribution," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 3(1), pages 157-179, February.
    3. Martin Ljunge, 2011. "Trust Issues: Evidence from Second Generation Immigrants," Discussion Papers 11-31, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
    4. Johnson, Noel D. & Mislin, Alexandra, 2012. "How much should we trust the World Values Survey trust question?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 116(2), pages 210-212.
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    Cited by:

    1. Hollard, Guillaume & Sene, Omar, 2016. "Social capital and access to primary health care in developing countries: Evidence from Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of Health Economics, Elsevier, vol. 45(C), pages 1-11.

    More about this item


    trust; internet use; intergenerational transmission; cultural transmission; TV watching;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness
    • J62 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Job, Occupational and Intergenerational Mobility; Promotion
    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification

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