India is among the most trusted nations globally when it comes to government, business, NGOs and media but has recorded “extreme trust losses” compared to last year, a survey said today. Coming ahead of the World Economic Forum annual summit the 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer said, globally, people’s trust in these four areas remained largely unchanged from last year. Of 28 countries surveyed, 20 lie in ‘distruster territory’, one more than in 2017. China topped the Trust Index among both the informed public and the general population segments, with scores of 83 and 74 respectively. India was at the third place in both the categories with scores of 77 in case of informed public and 68 in general population. Indonesia was at the second place. The findings are based on an online survey of more than 33,000 respondents in 28 countries. The fieldwork for the survey was conducted between October 28 and November 20, 2017. “China’s trust scores are nearly matched by India, the UAE, Indonesia and Singapore, while the Western democracies languish mostly in distruster territory, challenging the traditional geopolitical vision of satisfaction with systems,” the report said. As per the survey, India was among the six countries with extreme trust losses over the past year which was topped by the US.
“The collapse of trust in the US is driven by a staggering lack of faith in government,” the survey said, adding that the remaining institutions of business, media and NGOs also experienced declines. The United States saw a 37-point aggregate drop in trust across all institutions, followed by Italy (down 21), Brazil (-17), South Africa (-17), India (-13) and Columbia (-13). The survey further noted that for the first time media is the least trusted institution globally. In 22 of the 28 countries surveyed it is now distrusted. “The demise of confidence in the Fourth Estate is driven primarily by a significant drop in trust in platforms, notably search engines and social media,” it added.
The survey further noted that companies headquartered in Canada, Switzerland, Sweden and Australia are most trusted. “The least trusted country brands are Mexico (32 per cent), India (32 per cent), Brazil (34 per cent) and China (36 per cent),” the survey said, adding that trust in brand US (50 per cent) dropped five points — the biggest decline of the countries surveyed. This is based on views of respondents about global companies headquartered in specific countries and how much these firms are trusted by them ‘to do what is right’.