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Trust and safety in the segregated city: contextualizing the relationship between institutional trust, crime-related insecurity and generalized trust
Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences, Örebro University, Sweden. (Miljösociologi)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8695-4504
Örebro University, Orebro University School of Business, Örebro University, Sweden. (CEROC)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3922-578X
2016 (English)In: Scandinavian Political Studies, ISSN 0080-6757, E-ISSN 1467-9477, Vol. 39, no 4, 458-481 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Trust is a crucial asset for any society, and the quest to generate and uphold trust is as crucial as ever. Several contemporary societal developments are proposed as being particularly challenging for upholding and restoring the levels of trust in society, including increasing ethnic diversity, rising inequality and the related geographical segregation. It has been convincingly argued that democratic institutions may generate trust by neutralizing some of these effects. This article explores how the mechanisms of trust differ in segregated, disadvantaged neighbourhoods as opposed to the surrounding general society. The empirical material consists of individual-level data from a segregated neighbourhood (Vivalla) in a medium-sized city in Sweden (Örebro), with a random sample from the population of the city (the Vivalla area excluded) as the comparison reference point, representing the general society. In the article we introduce perceived safety as an important mediator between trust in legal and government institutions and generalized trust, through which the differing mechanisms become evident. In the disadvantaged neighbourhood, we show that trust in government institutions has the function of primarily decreasing crime-related insecurity, which in its turn affects generalized trust. Thus, the relationship is indirect. In the city population, the effect instead goes directly from trust in government institutions to generalized trust. The results suggest that the potentials of different means to build and restore trust are dependent on local context.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Wiley-Blackwell, 2016. Vol. 39, no 4, 458-481 p.
Keyword [en]
Institutional trust, generelaized trust, segregation, structual equation modeling
National Category
Political Science Sociology
Research subject
Political Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-50540DOI: 10.1111/1467-9477.12069ISI: 000389246100008Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84992386196OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-50540DiVA: diva2:932868
Available from: 2016-06-02 Created: 2016-06-02 Last updated: 2017-01-09Bibliographically approved

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Berg, MonikaJohansson, Tobias
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School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences, Örebro University, SwedenOrebro University School of Business, Örebro University, Sweden
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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