O-STA

Trust levels: much room for improvement

Politicians, managers and journalists all suffer from the same problem: people do not really trust them - these are the results of a survey by GfK Ad Hoc Research Worldwide on people´┐Ż's trust in leading lights from politics, media, the church and business

European citizens afford representatives of the church, lawyers and in particular doctors a greater degree of trust. The situation in America is similar to Europe. People from Northern Europe are more positively disposed towards leading figures, whereas those in Central and Eastern Europe tend to be more cynical.

In Western Europe, 86 per cent of people responded that they did not have any faith in politicians, while two thirds harbour similar feelings towards top management in companies. People in Denmark and Finland, however, feel very differently. 64 per cent of Danish respondents and 50 per cent of Finnish respondents indicated that they trusted business leaders, which is a far higher percentage than in other countries. Danish people were also more positive regarding politicians than other nationalities, with four in ten people finding politicians at least a little trustworthy.

No other nation is as critical of politicians, business leaders and the media as the Germans: only 18 per cent of respondents trust the managers of large companies and only two per cent have a great deal of trust in them. Over 90 per cent of Germans are at the other end of the scale, with three out of four actively distrusting top management. In a comparison of the various groups, managers come second to last, and politicians are even worse off. Only eight per cent of all Germans trust them and only one per cent trusts political representatives completely.