NORMAL ACTS OF IRRATIONAL TRUST: MOTIVATED ATTRIBUTIONS AND THE TRUST DEVELOPMENT PROCESS

J. Mark Weber, Deepak Malhotra, J. Keith Murnighan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

136 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper presents a new, motivated attributions model of trust development. The model builds on two simple insights: that the parties in a potentially trusting relationship are likely to view their interaction differently and that their attributions of each other's behavior will be self-servingly motivated. The model specifically focuses on the role of dependence in motivating attributions of trustworthiness, suggesting, for instance, that people ameliorate the anxiety associated with dependence by perceiving others as trustworthy. The model explains why trustors, contrary to the prescriptions of the dominant, rational choice approach, often engage in large, seemingly irrational acts of trust and when and why these acts, despite being tremendously risky, can be crucial to trust development. The paper explores the consequences of these insights for interpersonal interactions as well as touching on the potential for extensions to inter-organizational and international interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAn Annual Series of Analytical Essays and Critical Reviews
EditorsRoderick Kramer, Barry Staw
Pages75-101
Number of pages27
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2004

Publication series

NameResearch in Organizational Behavior
Volume26
ISSN (Print)0191-3085

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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