Confuting one’s priors: the adversity and solidarity edition

A lot of research confirms one’s priors.  Sometimes it refutes them – or at least undermines them. Guessing what the outcome would be before I read the abstract, I would have guessed the opposite of what they found.  But – hindsight being the powerful tool that it is – I can certainly see how the result could go the other way – which it seems it has.

Do Natural Disasters Affect Trust/Trustworthiness? Evidence from the 2010 Chilean Earthquake
By: Fleming, David A
Chong, Alberto E.
Bejarano, Hernan D.

A series of trust games were conducted in Chile to analyze whether the past 2010 earthquake affected trust and trustworthiness in rural communities. Results show that trust levels are invariant between villages affected by the earthquake and villages not affected by this shock (control group). However, we find statistical evidence that trustworthiness has diminished in areas affected by the earthquake. Results are relevant for policy regarding aid and recovery of communities affected by these types of disasters.

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