Manifestation of Social Trust among Migrants: The Case of Iranian Residents in Toronto, Canada

Mahmood Ketabi, Vahid Ghasemi, Mojtaba Mahdavi


This paper is excerpted from a research project titled “A Sociological Analysis of Socio-economic Situation of Iranian Migrants in Canada (Case Study: Toronto). This survey research has been carried out in 2005. Its main goal is to answer the following questions: What is the trust level among Iranian migrants residing in Toronto? What is the difference between the in-group social trust level (trust among Iranians) and the out-group trust level (confidence toward Canadians living in Toronto)? In an attempt to answer these questions a sample of 182 Iranians were interviewed on the basis of a standardized questionnaire. The findings reveal that the in-group social trust level – as measured against the defined scale – is slightly below the average, whereby the difference from the middle point of the scale is statistically significant. Moreover, it demonstrates that the mean figure for out-group social trust is significantly higher than the average defined on the scale. The results also suggest that the most important cause for lower in-group trust should be sought for in the pre- migration period. Researches carried out on social confidence indicate that weakness of social trust in home country is often transferred to other countries – after migration – and is intensified due to problems of the migrant community and increase of social risk.

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International Journal of Criminology and Sociological Theory | ISSN : 1916-2782