Trust in others, legal system and politics; European comparison

Trust in others, legal system and politics; European comparison

Personal characteristics Countries Periods Evaluation of trust in Other people (score) Evaluation of trust in Legal system (score) Evaluation of trust in Police (score) Evaluation of trust in Politicians (score) Evaluation of trust in Parliament (score) Evaluation of trust in Political parties (score) Evaluation of trust in European Parliament (score) Evaluation of trust in United Nations (score) Percentage of people with trust in Other people (%) Percentage of people with trust in Legal system (%) Percentage of people with trust in Police (%) Percentage of people with trust in Politicians (%) Percentage of people with trust in Parliament (%) Percentage of people with trust in Political parties (%) Percentage of people with trust in European Parliament (%) Percentage of people with trust in United Nations (%)
Education level: low Belgium 2018* 4.6 5.0 6.4 4.1 4.4 4.1 4.6 4.7 34 47 71 25 31 25 37 37
Education level: low Bulgaria 2018* 3.3 3.2 3.9 2.2 2.5 2.2 3.2 3.1 15 17 26 7 10 8 20 19
Education level: low Cyprus 2018* 3.0 4.4 5.4 2.8 3.5 2.7 4.6 5.0 15 27 51 9 17 8 31 37
Education level: low Denmark 2018* 6.4 7.2 7.9 4.9 5.6 5.0 5.0 6.3 69 78 88 42 53 44 42 65
Education level: low Germany 2018* 4.9 5.9 7.1 4.1 4.9 4.4 5.1 5.1 41 56 75 28 44 32 44 45
Education level: low Estonia 2018* 5.2 5.8 6.9 3.8 4.8 3.6 4.7 5.0 42 55 73 25 40 19 37 45
Education level: low Finland 2018* 6.8 6.6 7.9 4.8 5.6 4.9 5.4 6.4 74 72 88 44 53 43 50 70
Education level: low France 2018* 4.2 4.9 6.5 3.5 3.8 3.1 3.8 4.5 22 40 69 17 20 13 25 35
Education level: low Greece 2018*
Education level: low Hungary 2018* 4.3 5.5 6.5 3.8 4.6 3.6 5.0 5.5 35 51 68 27 39 23 41 48
Education level: low Ireland 2018* 5.1 5.0 6.3 3.6 4.3 3.6 4.5 5.2 47 44 65 23 33 22 38 48
Education level: low Iceland 2018* 6.1 5.7 7.8 4.2 4.9 4.1 5.6 6.7 63 58 87 32 46 27 55 72
Education level: low Israel 2018*
Education level: low Italy 2018* 4.3 5.1 6.6 2.8 4.0 2.6 4.0 4.6 34 48 72 14 31 12 31 41
Education level: low Kosovo 2018*
Education level: low Croatia 2018* 3.7 2.8 5.6 1.7 2.3 2.0 3.9 4.2 17 14 50 7 14 7 29 29
Education level: low Latvia 2018* 3.8 3.8 5.5 2.5 3.3 2.5 4.3 4.2 20 23 43 10 13 7 32 34
Education level: low Lithuania 2018* 4.2 4.5 6.1 3.0 3.4 2.8 4.8 4.7 30 35 56 14 19 12 34 35
Education level: low Montenegro 2018* 3.9 4.6 5.6 3.2 4.3 3.1 4.9 4.8 27 39 51 21 37 14 44 43
Education level: low The Netherlands 2018* 5.7 5.9 6.7 5.0 5.4 4.9 4.9 5.5 61 64 78 49 54 45 45 57
Education level: low Norway 2018* 6.0 7.1 7.4 5.4 6.6 5.4 5.3 7.1 57 78 81 48 68 48 53 78
Education level: low Ukraine 2018*
Education level: low Austria 2018* 4.9 6.4 7.5 4.4 5.3 4.3 4.4 4.8 39 66 80 30 44 28 34 38
Education level: low Poland 2018* 3.6 4.2 5.7 3.2 3.9 3.2 4.5 5.4 22 29 54 15 24 15 31 45
Education level: low Portugal 2018* 3.4 3.8 6.1 2.4 3.8 2.6 4.2 5.3 18 23 60 11 24 11 31 48
Education level: low Russian Federation 2018*
Education level: low Serbia 2018* 3.6 4.3 5.7 3.6 4.9 3.3 3.3 3.6 21 35 50 26 43 22 25 27
Education level: low Slovenia 2018* 3.8 3.7 6.3 2.7 3.2 2.8 3.9 4.4 23 26 65 10 18 14 33 37
Education level: low Slovakia 2018* 4.2 4.5 4.9 3.4 4.0 3.7 4.7 5.0 35 37 44 27 31 31 42 43
Education level: low Spain 2018* 4.6 4.6 6.7 2.4 3.8 2.3 4.2 4.7 33 37 71 8 24 7 31 39
Education level: low Czech Republic 2018* 5.0 5.2 5.9 3.7 4.4 3.7 4.7 5.3 49 46 59 23 29 22 39 48
Education level: low United Kingdom 2018* 4.8 5.6 6.5 3.3 4.0 3.4 3.1 4.6 37 52 67 18 25 18 19 37
Education level: low Sweden 2018* 5.6 5.8 6.6 4.4 5.5 4.6 4.7 6.1 51 58 71 30 52 31 37 58
Education level: low Switzerland 2018* 5.5 6.5 7.3 5.4 6.3 5.2 4.9 5.3 49 70 83 44 65 40 37 44
Education level: secondary Belgium 2018* 5.0 5.2 6.6 4.1 4.6 4.1 4.7 5.3 40 48 76 27 34 26 39 48
Education level: secondary Bulgaria 2018* 3.6 2.9 3.7 2.0 2.4 2.1 3.2 3.2 19 12 23 5 6 5 19 20
Education level: secondary Cyprus 2018* 3.9 4.4 5.5 2.9 3.8 2.8 4.6 4.7 23 31 52 11 17 10 35 37
Education level: secondary Denmark 2018* 6.9 7.5 7.9 5.0 6.0 5.2 4.9 6.4 78 84 89 44 59 45 43 68
Education level: secondary Germany 2018* 5.2 5.8 7.1 3.7 4.8 3.8 4.2 4.6 46 58 78 21 38 20 30 35
Education level: secondary Estonia 2018* 5.5 5.6 6.8 3.7 4.5 3.6 4.4 4.6 46 53 72 17 33 15 30 34
Education level: secondary Finland 2018* 6.7 7.0 8.1 4.7 5.7 4.8 5.2 6.3 80 79 92 39 57 43 49 70
Education level: secondary France 2018* 4.6 5.2 6.4 3.3 3.9 2.9 3.7 4.9 30 49 69 14 25 8 21 42
Education level: secondary Greece 2018*
Education level: secondary Hungary 2018* 4.9 5.5 6.3 4.0 4.6 3.9 5.0 5.7 43 53 65 29 38 27 45 56
Education level: secondary Ireland 2018* 5.4 5.0 6.1 3.8 4.5 3.8 4.8 5.4 48 45 63 25 37 23 41 53
Education level: secondary Iceland 2018* 6.4 6.0 7.4 4.2 4.8 4.0 5.4 6.5 67 64 83 30 40 26 50 72
Education level: secondary Israel 2018*
Education level: secondary Italy 2018* 5.1 5.5 6.7 3.2 4.4 3.1 4.5 5.0 49 55 78 17 37 16 37 46
Education level: secondary Kosovo 2018*
Education level: secondary Croatia 2018* 4.0 2.4 5.2 1.6 2.1 1.8 3.7 4.3 24 9 47 4 7 4 22 30
Education level: secondary Latvia 2018* 4.3 4.4 5.7 2.7 3.2 2.4 4.3 4.6 27 30 53 9 14 8 32 38
Education level: secondary Lithuania 2018* 4.6 4.4 6.2 3.2 3.2 2.9 4.9 5.1 33 34 61 14 18 14 41 42
Education level: secondary Montenegro 2018* 3.3 4.0 4.8 2.8 3.8 2.8 4.5 4.6 17 29 39 16 27 14 35 36
Education level: secondary The Netherlands 2018* 6.1 6.6 7.0 5.3 5.8 5.4 5.3 5.9 69 78 86 56 65 55 56 67
Education level: secondary Norway 2018* 6.6 7.2 7.5 4.9 6.3 5.1 5.2 6.8 73 82 85 42 68 45 46 75
Education level: secondary Ukraine 2018*
Education level: secondary Austria 2018* 5.5 6.6 7.4 4.2 5.3 4.1 4.2 4.7 53 70 82 25 47 22 28 40
Education level: secondary Poland 2018* 4.1 4.2 5.7 3.1 3.8 3.1 4.7 5.6 26 29 54 15 23 15 35 49
Education level: secondary Portugal 2018* 4.4 4.6 6.2 3.0 4.6 3.2 5.0 6.1 31 33 61 13 34 14 45 60
Education level: secondary Russian Federation 2018*
Education level: secondary Serbia 2018* 3.7 3.8 4.9 2.5 3.6 2.3 2.9 3.4 23 27 39 13 24 11 16 22
Education level: secondary Slovenia 2018* 4.4 3.8 6.0 2.5 3.5 2.6 3.6 4.3 32 24 61 9 19 8 24 31
Education level: secondary Slovakia 2018* 3.8 4.1 5.1 3.2 3.4 3.4 4.4 4.9 26 30 46 18 23 21 35 43
Education level: secondary Spain 2018* 5.3 4.8 6.8 2.5 4.1 2.5 4.5 5.1 46 40 72 10 32 10 34 43
Education level: secondary Czech Republic 2018* 5.0 5.1 5.9 3.6 4.1 3.6 4.1 4.8 45 48 58 21 30 22 32 42
Education level: secondary United Kingdom 2018* 5.0 5.5 6.5 3.4 4.0 3.4 3.2 5.0 41 55 72 18 30 17 16 43
Education level: secondary Sweden 2018* 6.2 6.3 7.0 4.7 5.9 4.8 5.0 6.2 65 69 79 37 61 38 43 67
Education level: secondary Switzerland 2018* 5.9 6.7 7.3 5.3 6.3 5.2 4.6 5.3 58 72 83 50 67 45 38 50
Education level: high Belgium 2018* 5.8 5.7 6.6 4.6 5.3 4.5 5.3 5.7 58 61 79 36 51 34 50 60
Education level: high Bulgaria 2018* 3.6 2.9 3.8 2.2 2.5 2.2 3.6 3.7 19 14 23 6 8 8 25 26
Education level: high Cyprus 2018* 4.2 4.5 5.1 2.6 3.5 2.5 4.8 4.4 30 35 46 10 20 12 39 36
Education level: high Denmark 2018* 7.6 8.2 8.2 5.5 6.7 5.6 5.6 6.7 89 93 94 56 75 56 55 75
Education level: high Germany 2018* 6.1 6.9 7.2 4.5 6.0 4.4 5.1 5.5 66 76 82 33 63 31 46 51
Education level: high Estonia 2018* 6.1 6.5 7.5 4.2 5.5 4.1 5.1 5.5 65 72 86 26 52 23 46 52
Education level: high Finland 2018* 7.4 7.8 8.4 5.3 6.5 5.4 5.8 6.9 90 93 96 55 78 56 62 81
Education level: high France 2018* 5.3 6.1 6.9 4.2 5.3 3.5 5.0 5.8 45 64 83 26 50 14 43 60
Education level: high Greece 2018*
Education level: high Hungary 2018* 5.4 5.8 6.6 4.2 4.8 4.2 5.6 6.1 51 55 67 25 41 27 53 61
Education level: high Ireland 2018* 6.0 5.9 6.4 4.4 5.2 4.2 5.6 6.2 62 64 72 34 50 32 59 70
Education level: high Iceland 2018* 7.0 6.5 7.6 4.9 5.7 4.7 6.1 7.0 81 77 91 41 63 40 67 83
Education level: high Israel 2018*
Education level: high Italy 2018* 5.3 5.9 6.9 3.5 4.8 3.4 5.0 5.4 48 60 83 18 38 15 47 55
Education level: high Kosovo 2018*
Education level: high Croatia 2018* 4.7 2.7 5.1 1.9 2.6 2.0 4.1 4.3 37 13 44 3 11 5 30 35
Education level: high Latvia 2018* 4.7 4.6 5.9 3.0 3.9 2.9 4.7 5.2 37 36 58 9 26 9 41 50
Education level: high Lithuania 2018* 5.3 5.1 6.4 3.5 3.6 3.2 5.7 5.9 44 46 68 21 26 19 56 60
Education level: high Montenegro 2018* 4.2 5.3 5.9 3.4 5.1 3.5 5.8 5.9 30 53 61 20 50 22 57 58
Education level: high The Netherlands 2018* 6.7 7.4 7.3 5.7 6.5 5.8 5.6 6.2 80 90 92 66 81 64 60 73
Education level: high Norway 2018* 7.1 8.0 7.9 5.6 7.2 5.7 5.8 7.1 83 92 92 57 85 58 55 84
Education level: high Ukraine 2018*
Education level: high Austria 2018* 6.3 7.2 7.1 4.5 6.2 4.3 5.4 5.8 69 79 81 30 64 28 51 61
Education level: high Poland 2018* 4.7 4.6 5.9 3.0 3.8 3.1 4.9 5.6 36 33 56 13 24 13 39 49
Education level: high Portugal 2018* 4.9 4.6 6.4 3.1 4.6 3.0 5.1 6.0 40 36 66 14 37 13 48 62
Education level: high Russian Federation 2018*
Education level: high Serbia 2018* 4.3 3.3 4.4 1.7 3.0 1.8 3.2 3.8 27 21 33 6 17 7 20 25
Education level: high Slovenia 2018* 5.3 4.6 6.4 3.0 4.2 2.9 4.4 5.0 49 34 68 11 28 9 33 42
Education level: high Slovakia 2018* 4.4 4.5 5.4 3.6 4.0 3.9 4.9 5.3 29 38 48 26 28 28 41 51
Education level: high Spain 2018* 5.9 5.2 7.0 3.0 4.5 2.8 5.0 5.4 61 51 80 14 37 10 43 55
Education level: high Czech Republic 2018* 5.0 5.6 6.2 3.8 4.5 3.7 4.4 5.1 44 55 66 22 36 20 35 48
Education level: high United Kingdom 2018* 5.8 6.5 7.0 3.9 5.0 3.9 4.2 5.7 60 72 81 25 44 22 33 56
Source: ESS, Statistics Netherlands
Explanation of symbols

Table description


This table provides information on how much inhabitants of various European countries aged 15 years or older trust other people, the legal system and politics. Figures are from 2002 onwards. The question concerning trust in other people is: Overall, do you think most people can be trusted, or that you can’t be too careful?. Trust in the legal system and politics is determined by asking people how much they trust a number of political and organisational institutions, viz. national parliament, the legal system, the police, politicians, political parties, the European Parliament and the United Nations.
The figures in this table are based on the European Social Survey (ESS). The ESS is conducted every two years commissioned by the European Committee, the European Science Foundation and various national organisations for scientific research.

Data available from: 2002

Status of the figures:
Figures of 2018 are preliminary. Figures of 2002 until 2016 are definite.

Changes as of 30 July 2021.
The preliminary figures of 2016 are corrected and made definite. Figures of 2018 are new.

When will new figures be published?
New figures will be published at the end of 2021. This will be preliminary figures of 2020, with most
countries going into the field one year later due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Description topics

Evaluation of trust in
Trust in other people and in a number of political and organisational institutions in terms of a mark from 0 to 10, where 0 equals no trust at all and 10 equals complete trust.
Other people
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Generally speaking, would you say that most people can be trusted, or that you can’t be too careful in dealing with people?’ 0 means you can’t be too careful, and 10 means that most people can be trusted.
Source: ESS
Legal system
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust the legal system?’ 0 means you do not trust the legal system at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Police
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust the police?’ 0 means you do not trust the police at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Politicians
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust politicians?’ 0 means you do not trust politicians at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Parliament
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust national parliament?’ 0 means you do not trust national parliament at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Political parties
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust political parties?’ 0 means you do not trust political parties at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
European Parliament
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust the European Parliament?’ 0 means you do not trust the European Parliament at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
United Nations
Figures show the average score in answer to the question: ‘Can you give a score from 0-10 for how much you personally trust the United Nations?’ 0 means you do not trust the United Nations at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS

Percentage of people with trust in
The percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the questions about trust in other people and a number of political and organisational institutions, where 0 means no trust at all and 10 means complete trust.
Other people
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘Generally speaking, would you say that most people can be trusted, or that you can’t be too careful in dealing with people?’ 0 means you can’t be too careful and 10 means that most people can be trusted.
Source: ESS
Legal system
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust the legal system?’ 0 means you do not trust the legal system at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Police
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust the police?’ 0 means you do not trust the police at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Politicians
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust politicians?’ 0 means you do not trust politicians at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Parliament
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust the national parliament?’ 0 means you do not trust the national parliament at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
Political parties
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust political parties?’ 0 means you do not trust political parties at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
European Parliament
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust the European Parliament?’ 0 means you do not trust an institution at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS
United Nations
Figures show the percentage of people assigning a score of 6 or higher in answer to the question: ‘How much do you personally trust the United Nations?’ 0 means you do not trust the United Nations at all, and 10 means you have complete trust.
Source: ESS