- The Oxford Handbook of Social and Political Trust
- About the Editor
- The Study of Trust
- Measuring Trust
- Social and Political Trust
- Trust and National Identity
- Trust and Democracy
- Ingroup-Outgroup Trust: Barriers, Benefits, and Bridges
- Biological and Psychological Influences on Interpersonal and Political Trust
- Trust and Participation in Associations
- Ethnic Diversity and Social Trust: A Critical Review of the Literature and Suggestions for a Research Agenda
- Cultural Persistence or Experiential Adaptation?: A Review of Studies Using Immigrants to Examine the Roots of Trust
- Trust and Minority Groups
- Trust and Rational Choice
- Trust Experiments, Trust Games, and Surveys
- Trust Games: Game-Theoretic Approaches to Embedded Trust
- Trust in Newly Democratic Regimes
- Social and Political Trust in Developing Countries: Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America
- Trust and the Welfare State
- New Evidence on Trust and Well-Being
- Trust and Population Health
- Trust and Corruption
- Trust and Tax Morale
- Social Trust and Economic Growth
- Foundations of Political Trust
- Political Trust and Polarization
- Economic Performance and Political Trust
- Trust and Elections
- Trust in Justice
- Trust in International Actors
- Trust in International Relations
Abstract and Keywords
This chapter provides an overview of the rational choice orientation to the study of trust, rooted primarily in economics, political science, and sociology. Conceptualizations of trust that build on a rational choice framework focus on the cognitions that form the basis of judgments of trustworthiness and decisions to place trust in another, as well as the embeddedness of trust relations in networks, groups, and institutions. The strengths of rational choice approaches to trust and their limitations are discussed, and brief comparisons are made with other approaches that have gained popularity in the social sciences (many of which are represented in this volume). Much of the trust we see in society is based on reasoned assessments of the evidence at hand that lead one to evaluate others as trustworthy given past performance, reputational information, and the incentives at play, including those derived from network embeddedness or the institutional context.
Karen S. Cook is Ray Lyman Wilbur Professor of Sociology at Stanford University.
Jessica J. Santana is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Sociology at Stanford University.
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