Differentiating trust in rural decision making drawing on an English case study
Curry, N. (2010) Differentiating trust in rural decision making drawing on an English case study. Sociologia Ruralis, 50 (2). pp. 121-138. ISSN 0038-0199
Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9523.2009.00503.x
Within the context of rural civic participation, three different types of trust are described, based on Simmelian-related constructs: personal trust, system trust and instrumental trust. Each has two components, a ‘justification’ and a ‘leap of faith’. These vary in proportion according to degrees of knowledge held. Shifts in public domain decision-making have changed the emphasis of different types of trust. In using constructs of social capital to explore rural decision-making, bonding social capital is seen to cohere around notions of personal trust, bridging social capital around system trust and contested social capital around instrumental trust. In rural decision-making it is suggested, drawing from case study evidence in Gloucestershire, England, that personal trust is becoming increasingly important because of the localisation of decision-making and ambiguities in representation. A greater reliance is also being placed on system trust because of increasingly complex decision-making structures. Whilst in principle instrumental trust can be ameliorated through access to knowledge and information, increasingly, the volume of information is problematic, and decision-makers are relinquishing their knowledge to ‘experts’.
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