1887

OECD Education Working Papers

This series is designed to make available to a wider readership selected studies drawing on the work of the OECD Directorate for Education. Authorship is usually collective, but principal writers are named. The papers are generally available only in their original language (English or French) with a short summary available in the other.

English, French

Birthplace diversity, income inequality and education gradients in generalised trust

The relevance of cognitive skills in 29 countries

The paper examines between-country differences in the mechanisms through which education could promote generalised trust using data from 29 countries participating in the OECD’s Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC). Results indicate that education is strongly associated with generalised trust and that a large part of this association is mediated by individuals’ literacy skills, income and occupational prestige. However, education gradients in levels of generalised trust and in the extent to which they are due to social stratification mechanisms or cognitive skills mechanisms vary across countries. Differences across countries in birthplace diversity and income inequality are correlated with how strongly education is associated with trust in different countries, as well as in the relative magnitude of direct and indirect associations. In particular, the relationship between literacy skills and generalised trust is stronger in the presence of greater birthplace diversity but is weaker in the presence of greater income inequality.

English

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