A method to improve trust in disaster risk managers: Voluntary action to share a common fate
In this study, the effect of voluntary action to share a common fate on trust was empirically examined. Voluntary actions to share a common fate involve decisions by risk managers that place them at an equal risk as the public during times of disaster. Participants included 118 housewives who were randomly assigned to one of the three conditions: voluntary sharing of a common fate, passive sharing of a common fate, and non-sharing of a common fate. The results of the analysis indicated that trust ratings of risk managers in the voluntary condition were greater than were the ratings in the other two conditions; moreover, the trust ratings in the passive and non-sharing conditions were at equally low levels. Furthermore, the results indicated that perceived value similarity for trust had a high explanatory power in both the passive and non-sharing conditions. These results suggested that risk managers can improve their trust by voluntarily sharing the fate of the general public. The results also indicated that when trust level is low, individual differences in trust are explained by the perception that the values are shared between risk managers and the public. Finally, the relationship between trust in risk managers and the forecast of risk reduction was discussed.