A Department of Homeland Security Emeritus Center of Excellence led by the University of Maryland

A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

From the Periphery and toward a Centralized Model for Trust in Government Risk and Disaster Communication


From the Periphery and toward a Centralized Model for Trust in Government Risk and Disaster Communication

Abstract: 

In the context of disaster research, trust is ubiquitous. Despite its reach across multiple research domains, the devil is in the lack of a comprehensive understanding of how trust is defined, measured, and applied in the context of government risk and disaster communication. This article presents a systematic literature review of trust research undertaken in the context of government as opposed to corporate, risk, and disaster communication. Findings show that trust is rarely defined, but those articles that do define it draw on multiple definitions, which has implications for the operationalization of trust in communication research and practice. Another source of variance is around the theoretical or conceptual frameworks for trust. Research mostly treats trust at the periphery, assuming its existence rather than exploring how it operates in government risk and disaster communication settings. In terms of its application, the majority of empirical work around trust is focused on the response phase of disasters. Following from this review, this study offers a research road map for trust and argues for a centralized view of trust in government risk and disaster communication.

Publication Information

Full Citation: 

Liu, Brooke F. and Amisha M. Mehta. 2020. "From the Periphery and toward a Centralized Model for Trust in Government Risk and Disaster Communication." Journal of Risk Research (June). https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/13669877.2020.1773516

START Author(s): 
Brooke Liu
Publication URL: 
Visit Website