Does decentralisation bring the people back to the government? An empirical analysis of the effect of decentralisation on political trust

Min Tang, Narisong Huhe

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This study offers an empirical test of the effect of decentralisation on political trust. A comparative analysis of citizens in 47 countries suggests indirect and heterogeneous consequences of decentralisation. First, while various dimensions of decentralisation are significantly associated with political trust at the country level, no dimension has a direct effect on political trust at the individual level. Second, not all forms of decentralisation contribute to the promotion of political trust. And, finally, two dimensions of decentralisation (that is, fiscal and administrative) promote political trust through reducing the negative effect of democratic values.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)403-426
Number of pages24
JournalPolicy and Politics
Issue number3
Early online date22 Apr 2015
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jul 2016


  • decentralisation
  • democratic values
  • political trust
  • fiscal decentralisation
  • administrative decentralisation

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