Terrorism, Trust and Tourism

Susanne Jensen, Gert Tinggaard Svendsen


How does terrorism affect social trust and tourism? The rising number of terrorist attacks in Western Europe has caused safety problems not only for local citizens but also for tourists. In fact, terrorists challenge the formal violence monopoly of the state thus creating a sense of anarchy and distrust. Social trust is about trusting strangers, so when less predictable behaviour occurs in, a given country, people become more careful as they tend to trust most other people less. An interesting case for future research is Scandinavia as the level of terrorism is still low and, at the same time, Scandinavia can record most social trust in the world meaning a competitive advantage when attracting tourists. Arguably, a double dividend is created from fighting terrorism, namely more social trust accumulated and more tourists attracted. Future research should therefore try to further test our model by both quantitative and qualitative methods, for example by undertaking extensive comparative studies between Scandinavia and other countries with more terrorism and less trust.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/iss.v5i2.12331


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