Trust as a Private Good in the Context of Social Capital

Publication type Article
Status Published
Affiliation: Independent Researcher
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameSotsiologicheskie issledovaniya
EditionНомер 8

The purpose of thе article is to conceptualize trust as a private good. This purpose is relevant because today social capital is simultaneously studied in fundamentally different paradigms – as private and as public good. As a result, we cannot get a clear definition of social capital. One of the reasons for this duality is that the key element of social capital, i.e. trust, is studied in different paradigms. The rule of law and personal reputation create trust in a person, but the former is usually considered the property of society, and the latter is usually considered the property of a particular individual. In this light, the question of the possibility to conceptualize trust exclusively in one of the paradigms becomes relevant. First, the author describes his concept of social capital, defines trust and describes its role in the context of social capital. Trust sources are then divided into three types: subject properties, object properties, and context properties. On this basis, three pure types of trust are distinguished (baseline, personal, collective) and a composite one (categorical). Further, they are tied to a specific social unit with the help of an auxiliary concept of the collective, thus demonstrating fundamental possibility of conceptualizing trust as a private good. Special attention is paid to the role of institutions in creating trust, which the author deems to consider as properties of a collective. In conclusion, the logic of converting types of trust into each other is described.

Keywordstrust, types, personal, general, baseline, collective, categorical, social resource, social capital, favor willingness
Publication date03.10.2023
Number of characters33419
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