Dualized trust: risk, social trust and the welfare state

2019-10-16T11:02:46Z (GMT) by Anthony Kevins
This article examines how labour market vulnerability and social policy interact to shape generalized trust. Drawing insights from the literature on dualization, I suggest that: (1) labour market outsiders will have lower levels of generalized trust due to their increased risk exposure; and (2) active labour market policies, by conditioning labour market vulnerability, can reduce the impact of outsiderness on trust. Leveraging within-country cleavages between insiders and outsiders therefore allows us to assess one possible mechanism behind the welfare state’s generation of trust, while at the same time holding cultural context and broader trust levels constant. Analysis of data from the 2008–2014 waves of the European Social Survey then provides evidence of the impact of outsiderness on trust and the ability of social policy to moderate that effect. The investigation thus sheds light on both an additional consequence of dualization and a mechanism linking the welfare state to generalized trust.