The Community Trust Report

Over the last month, I’ve been involved in a study that explored the topic of community trust in public institutions and political leaders. The study involved online surveys with 1500 people from Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver, and used the HuTrust model to measure the psychological drivers of trust. Last week, The Community Trust Report was shared for the first time at TEDxSFU.
Figure 1: When people trust their community, 80% will report a crime 
The Benefits of Community Trust

Trust is at the core of a community. Many of the social actions and interactions that embody the idea of ‘community’ are predicated on the need for trust. In fact, our research showed that when people trust their community, 80% will ‘help their neighbors,’ 80% will ‘report a crime to authorities,’ 73% will ‘vote in elections,’ and 54% will ‘volunteer more of their time.’ 

Political Trust in Montreal

From a political point-of-view, our research had some interesting findings on trust in Canadian politics. On average, only 19% of people surveyed in Montreal said they trusted Prime Minister Stephen Harper, versus 44% in Toronto and 46% in Vancouver. 

Among those surveyed in Montreal, the psychological driver that most reduced trust in Stephen Harper was found to be Vision; meaning that people ‘felt his values were less appealing.' In contrast, among those surveyed in Toronto and Vancouver the psychological driver that most increased trust in Stephen Harper was found to be Stability; meaning that people ‘felt he had a strong foundation.’ 

Police Trust in Vancouver

From a social point-of-view, our research has some interesting findings on trust in Police. On average, only 65% of people surveyed in Vancouver said they trusted the Vancouver Police Department, versus 78% in Toronto who trusted the Toronto Police Service, and 80% in Montreal who trusted the Montreal Police Service
Figure 2: The VPD are significantly less trusted than the TPS
Among those surveyed in Vancouver, the psychological drivers that most reduced trust in the Vancouver Police Department were Relationship and Competence; meaning that people ‘felt they were less great to deal with,’ and ‘felt they were less able to deliver what they promise.’

Community Trust at TEDxSFU

The theme for TEDxSFU was community engagement, and it attracted speakers including Jim Chu (Chief, Vancouver Police), John Furlong (CEO, Vancouver 2010 Olympics) and Ryan Holmes (CEO, Hootsuite). Below is a copy of the presentation I made at the event, which includes some of the findings from The Community Trust Report.