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Religious affiliations and the trust in persons and institutions of Canada

TitleReligious affiliations and the trust in persons and institutions of Canada
Year of Publication2013
AuthorsMata, F.
Date PublishedApril

Using a pooled sample of approximately forty-four thousand Canadian adults drawn from Statistics Canada's General Social Surveys of 2003 and 2008, this paper explores variations in trust directed towards persons and institutions among individuals of various religious affiliations in Canada. Personal and institutional trust attitudinal items were examined and their constructs were isolated from the rest of social capital constructs. Levels of personal trust were found relatively higher among members of Protestant denominations and lower among Muslims,Hindus, Sikhs, and Jehovah'sWitness adherents. Institutional trust levels were found more evenly matched across religious denominations. Though age, education, province of residence, and residence in Canada were strong predictors of trust, multivariate analysis using individual and place covariates found that, for some groups, the effects of religious affiliation did not disappear after these were introduced in the regression equations. Overall, results demonstrate the importance of religion and other socio-demographic variables in understanding processes of human capital formation in variousreligious groupsin Canada.

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