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The cultural origins of institutional trust: The case of the European Central Bank

Siria Angino, Federico M Ferrara and Stefania Secola

European Union Politics, 2022, vol. 23, issue 2, 212-235

Abstract: Does culture have a causal effect on institutional trust? We answer this question by assessing the non-economic determinants of public trust in the European Central Bank. To analyse institutional trust, we employ a novel dataset of citizen perceptions and knowledge about the European Central Bank. Cultural traits are measured by indicators of social trust at the level of Euro area sub-national regions. We show that individuals living in regions with lower social trust systematically exhibit less trust in the European Central Bank. An instrumental variable approach based on historical variables of education and political institutions supports a causal interpretation of our findings. These results are robust across different model specifications and measures of trust.

Keywords: European Central Bank; institutional trust; instrumental variables; regional culture; social trust. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2022
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DOI: 10.1177/14651165211048325

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