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ERIC Number: EJ948491
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Dec
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 57
ISSN: ISSN-0190-2725
Culture, Cooperation, and the General Welfare
Berigan, Nick; Irwin, Kyle
Social Psychology Quarterly, v74 n4 p341-360 Dec 2011
Solutions to social dilemmas require cooperation. Given that there are commonly multiple avenues for cooperation, sometimes social dilemmas require coordination of strategies in addition to sufficient cooperation to be successful. This study examines one social dilemma where such coordination is necessary: supporting the general welfare. Using World Values Survey data from 33 nations, we compare active membership in charitable organizations versus attitudes toward government welfare programs as examples of two different types of cooperation. We argue that culture influences the form of cooperation a group adopts via the amount of trust it generates. Specifically, individualist cultures promote relatively high levels of trust, which produce first-order cooperation (here, involvement in charitable organizations). Collectivist cultures generate relatively low trust levels, facilitating second-order cooperation (here, greater support for government welfare programs). Findings support our arguments and thus suggest that culture, mediated by trust, shapes individuals' perceptions about creating and sustaining public goods. (Contains 6 footnotes, 6 tables, and 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A