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Social Psychology and Society

Publisher: Moscow State University of Psychology and Education

ISSN (printed version): 2221-1527

ISSN (online): 2311-7052


License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published since 2010

Published quarterly

Free of fees
Open Access Journal


Trust in organizations — organizational, intergroup, and value research perspective 1725


Kaltiainen J.
Master of Social Sciences, Doctoral Student, Doctoral Student of Social Psychology, Department of Social Research, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

Helkama K.
Professor of Faculty Social Psychology, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

Jasinskaja-Lahti I.
Professor, Chair of Social Psychology Discipline, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Helsinki, Helsinki, Finland

In this overview article, we discuss the importance of trust for organizations by employing a multilevel and multidisciplinary perspective. We complement and contribute to the existing reviews by (1) considering trust not only within and between individuals and organizations, but also at the societal level, (2) bridging findings and literature from the fields of organizational, intergroup, and value research, and (3) summarizing recent research on the dynamics of trust and its development in organizations. Related to contemplating trust at various levels, we present multiple topics such as individual’s tendency to trust, employees’ trust in leaders, trust between groups with examples from organizational mergers and interethnic relations, and the relationship between trust and societies’ economic competitiveness. We conclude by summarizing recent organizational literature about the development of trust, transfers of trust towards different levels of leadership, and reciprocity in employees’ trust and fairness perceptions. In so doing, we contribute to the means to promote trust, active citizenship and socially sustainable growth of organizations and our societies.

Keywords: trust, organizations, multilevel, multidisciplinary

Column: Theoretical Research


A Part of Article

Trust is essential for organizational and social functioning at large. In organizational research, trust has received notable attention: it has been seen as crucial for several facets of organizational life, such as teamwork, productivity, and employees’ job satisfaction and commitment to organizations.

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