Trust, terrorism, and technology

Journal of Business Ethics 6 (5):333 - 341 (1987)
The development of civilization implies an evolution of complex trust mechanisms which integrate the social system and form bonds which allow individuals to interact, even if they are strangers. Key elements of trust are predictability of consequences and an evaluation of consequences in terms of self-interest or values. Values, ethics, and norms enhance predictability. The terrorist introduces an unpredictable event which has negative consequences, thus destroying trust. However, terrorist-like situations occur in day-to-day activities. Technology itself makes the world more interdependent and less predictable. Furthermore, technological accidents and disasters, which are also unpredictable and negative, may prompt individuals to perceive technology as if it were a terrorist.
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DOI 10.1007/BF00382889
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Niklas Luhmann (1982). Trust and Power. Studies in Soviet Thought 23 (3):266-270.

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