Working Paper No. 1053

Does Social Trust Speed up Reforms? The Case of Central-Bank Independence

Published: January 8, 2015Pages: 24Keywords: Central banks; Independence; Social trust; Inflation; Monetary policy; ReformJEL-codes: E52; E58; P48; Z13
Published version

Does Social Trust Speed up Reforms? The Case of Central-Bank Independence Niclas Berggren, Sven-Olov Daunfeldt and Jörgen Hellström

Many countries have undertaken central-bank independence reforms, but the years of implementation differ. What explains such differences in timing? This is of interest more broadly, as it sheds light on factors that matter for the speed at which economic reforms come about. We study a rich set of potential determinants, both economic and political, but put special focus on a cultural factor, social trust.

We find empirical support for an inverse u-shape: Countries with low and high social trust implemented their reforms earlier than countries with intermediate levels. We make use of two factors to explain this pattern: the need to undertake reform (which is more urgent in countries with low social trust) and the ability to undertake reform (which is greater in countries with high social trust).

Niclas Berggren


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Sick of Inequality?

An Introduction to the Relationship between Inequality and Health

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In this book Andreas Bergh, Therese Nilsson, IFN and Lund University, and Daniel Waldenström, IFN and Paris School of Economics, France, review the latest research on the relationship between inequality and health. What does inequality mean for our health? Does increasing income inequality affect outcomes such as obesity, life expectancy and subjective well-being?


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