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Will contact increase trust? - A case study of the young Officers Programme

  • Peter Håkansson
Publiceringsår: 2003
Språk: Engelska
Dokumenttyp: Rapport
Förlag: [Publisher information missing]


This study tries to find out if increased contact leads to increased trust between individuals and communities that earlier were enemies. The

theoretical baseline for the study is the contact theory. According to the contact theory the more contact, under the right circumstances, the less trouble. Empirical research supports the theory on the individual level. However, when it comes to an aggregated level, it is more difficult to see results that support this theory. This, for example, applies to areas with high ethnic heterogeneity (higher proportion of an ethnic minority) that have more negative ethnical attitudes.

The results from this study give a mixed picture. When asked, the

participants think they have changed, but the questions in the questionnaire indicate that they haven’t. The divided and inconsistent results indicate problems with the method used. The core question, however, is whether the participants have changed, as they say themselves, or haven’t changed, as the results from the questions indicate. We don’t know, we can only speculate. The most logical answer points to a bias in the first questionnaire. This means that the participants may have answered in a way in which they

felt they were expected to answer.


  • Economic History
  • inter-ethnic confidence
  • trust
  • Bosnia and Hercegovina
  • contact theory



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