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“It was a vindication of the whole society” A minor field study on the relationship between trials and trust in transitional justice

Adelgren, Astrid LU (2016) STVK02 20152
Department of Political Science
Abstract
After authoritarian periods of human rights abuses by the state, trust in state institutions is likely to have eroded among most citizens.
One way to try to re-establish this trust - which many researchers believe is essential to make democracy work - is to hold those responsible accountable in criminal trials. But to what extent do such trials affect public confidence, and how does the role of trials relate to other trust-building measures? These questions were examined by looking at institutional trust in Argentina, where there have been several different periods after the dictatorship with distinct approaches to criminal accountability. Surveys measuring the trust in different institutions from 1984 until 2015 was analysed, and... (More)
After authoritarian periods of human rights abuses by the state, trust in state institutions is likely to have eroded among most citizens.
One way to try to re-establish this trust - which many researchers believe is essential to make democracy work - is to hold those responsible accountable in criminal trials. But to what extent do such trials affect public confidence, and how does the role of trials relate to other trust-building measures? These questions were examined by looking at institutional trust in Argentina, where there have been several different periods after the dictatorship with distinct approaches to criminal accountability. Surveys measuring the trust in different institutions from 1984 until 2015 was analysed, and in-depth interviews were conducted with strategically selected citizens, in order to explore the possible
reasonings behind the responses in the surveys. The results indicate that trials may have a significant positive influence on institutional trust. The trust is supported by a sense of vindication among the
affected citizens, as well as by the fact that the state has acknowledged that the past abuses were unacceptable. Yet, successful institutional reforms seem to be an important precondition in order for this effect to develop and maintain itself. (Less)
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author
Adelgren, Astrid LU
supervisor
organization
course
STVK02 20152
year
type
M2 - Bachelor Degree
subject
keywords
democracy, trust, institution, Argentina, transitional justice, trials
language
English
id
8515523
date added to LUP
2016-02-02 14:14:43
date last changed
2016-02-02 14:14:43
@misc{8515523,
  abstract     = {After authoritarian periods of human rights abuses by the state, trust in state institutions is likely to have eroded among most citizens.
One way to try to re-establish this trust - which many researchers believe is essential to make democracy work - is to hold those responsible accountable in criminal trials. But to what extent do such trials affect public confidence, and how does the role of trials relate to other trust-building measures? These questions were examined by looking at institutional trust in Argentina, where there have been several different periods after the dictatorship with distinct approaches to criminal accountability. Surveys measuring the trust in different institutions from 1984 until 2015 was analysed, and in-depth interviews were conducted with strategically selected citizens, in order to explore the possible
reasonings behind the responses in the surveys. The results indicate that trials may have a significant positive influence on institutional trust. The trust is supported by a sense of vindication among the 
affected citizens, as well as by the fact that the state has acknowledged that the past abuses were unacceptable. Yet, successful institutional reforms seem to be an important precondition in order for this effect to develop and maintain itself.},
  author       = {Adelgren, Astrid},
  keyword      = {democracy,trust,institution,Argentina,transitional justice,trials},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {“It was a vindication of the whole society” A minor field study on the relationship between trials and trust in transitional justice},
  year         = {2016},
}