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Navigating the Life Cycle of Trust in Developing Economies: One-size Solutions Do Not Fit All
Business and Society Review (2015)
  • laura hartman, DePaul University
  • julie gedro
  • courtney masterson, University of Illinois at Chicago

Trust is critical to the development and maintenance of collaborative and cohesive relationships in societies, broadly, and in organizations, specifically. At the same time, trust is highly dependent on the social context in which it occurs. Unfortunately, existing research involving trust remains somewhat limited to a particular set of developed economies, providing a window to explore a culture's stage of economic development as a key contextual determinant of trust within organizations. In this article, we review the state of the scholarship on trust and identify those qualities of trust that are common in organizations at similar stages of economic development, referred to as its etic aspects. We then also distinguish those elements of trust that are, to the contrary, culturally specific or emic in nature. We structure our discussion around the “life cycle of trust” (i.e., the creation, maintenance, and postfracture repair of trust) and consider unique factors in its application to developing economies. In doing so, we ground our examination in expository examples through field experience in Haiti. We conclude with the proposal of a framework for future research oriented toward the resolution of remaining theoretical and empirical queries as they relate to trust in developing economies.

  • trust,
  • developing economies,
  • economic development,
  • culture,
  • education,
  • haiti
Publication Date
Summer June 1, 2015
Citation Information
laura hartman, julie gedro and courtney masterson. "Navigating the Life Cycle of Trust in Developing Economies: One-size Solutions Do Not Fit All" Business and Society Review Vol. 120 Iss. 2 (2015)
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