The effect of transparency on trust in government: A cross-national comparative experiment

Stephan Grimmelikhuijsen, Gregory Porumbescu, Boram Hong, Tobin Im

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

137 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Transparency is considered a key value for trustworthgovernments. However, the effect of transparency on citizens' trust across national cultures is overlooked in current research. This article compares the effect of transparency on trust in government in the Netherlands and South Korea. The effect is investigated in two similar series of three experiments. The authors hypothesize that the effect of transparency differs because the countries have different cultural values regarding power distance and short- and long-term orientation. Results reveal similar patterns in both countries: transparency has a subdued and sometimes negative effect on trust in government. However, the negative effect in South Korea is much stronger. The difference in the magnitude of transparency's effect suggests that national cultural values play a significant role in how people perceive and appreciate government transparency.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-586
Number of pages12
JournalPublic Administration Review
Volume73
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jul 1

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All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Public Administration
  • Marketing

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