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'Widening the radius of trust' : ethnographic explorations of trust and Indian business

Harriss, John (2003) 'Widening the radius of trust' : ethnographic explorations of trust and Indian business. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 9 (4). pp. 755-773. ISSN 1359-0987

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Identification Number: 10.1111/j.1467-9655.2003.00172.x


Trust has latterly become an important focus of enquiry across the social sciences, and this paper reflects critically upon the current literature on the basis of ethnographic research into the transactions of small companies in several sectors of Indian industry, and the reorganisation that is taking place in Indian family business groups in the context of economic globalisation. It is concluded that much of the argument about the increasing importance of trust in the context of globalisation is misplaced, and that it serves an ideological function. The problem of business management in India is that of bringing about change in the institutional framework and in business behaviour in a context in which these changes confront a culture of ‘selective trust’ amongst groups of people in specific social networks.

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Additional Information: This is an electronic version of an Article published in the Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 9 (4) pp. 755-773 © 2003 Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the Royal Anthropological Institute. LSE has developed LSE Research Online so that users may access research output of the School. Copyright © and Moral Rights for the papers on this site are retained by the individual authors and/or other copyright owners. Users may download and/or print one copy of any article(s) in LSE Research Online to facilitate their private study or for non-commercial research. You may not engage in further distribution of the material or use it for any profit-making activities or any commercial gain. You may freely distribute the URL ( of the LSE Research Online website.
Divisions: LSE
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor > HD28 Management. Industrial Management
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2006
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2024 14:06

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