We need a more nuanced conversation around trust

By Ben Page | 09 July 2019
  • Ben Page

Trust is in short supply we are told. The outgoing president of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), Sarah Howard, said there has been a ‘universal breakdown in trust’ between Government and the public. At Davos, the elite chastise themselves over what some describe as a profound crisis in trust since the 2008 global banking crash. And it is true that in both Britain and the US – and especially the US – trust in central Government has fallen since the 1960s.

Yet despite the headlines and hand-wringing this narrative is at odds with much of the data. Our latest report, Dimensions of Trust – the truth, finds that trust is complex and takes many forms. Many of these are not in crisis or decline. Without some degree of trust society simply would not function.

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