Scandinavian Working Papers in Business Administration

SSE/EFI Working Paper Series in Business Administration,
Stockholm School of Economics

No 2002:13: An Expectancy-Value Approach to Determinants of Trust

Mattias Viklund ()
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Mattias Viklund: Dept. of Business Administration, Stockholm School of Economics, Postal: Stockholm School of Economics, P.O. Box 6501, SE-113 83 Stockholm, Sweden

Abstract: An Expectancy-Value model was used to test various attributes of trustworthiness, as determinants of people’s trust in 5 Swedish organizations (public and commercial). Trust was conceptualized as an attitude, dependent on respondents’ beliefs about and evaluations of the organization with respect to these attributes. A survey was sent out to a sample representative of the Swedish population (response rate: 55.5%; N = 347). It was found that the Expectancy-Value Model was powerful in explaining trust in 3 organizations. However, it was also found that a model including only values as predictors of trust was more powerful in explaining trust in 2 organizations: the Swedish Government and advertising firms. The phenomenon of double denial (Sjöberg & Montgomery, 1999) was very strong, which could be an important explanation of these findings. It is discussed whether double denial could be caused by trust ratings based on ideologies (e.g., political or general anti-business) subscribed to and emotional reactions, rather than analytical evaluations of an organization.

Keywords: trust; attitude; organizations; expectancy-value

32 pages, September 9, 2002

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