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Business leaders receive low grades in this year's Trust Barometer

The Swedish people trust SR, SVT, Ericsson and Volvo, but they are considerably more sceptical towards their respective corporate executives.

In this year's Trust Barometer Swedish leadership is called into question. The exception is Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt - who is considerably more popular than his party. The Trust Barometer has been compiled by, among others, Professors Lennart Weibull and Sören Holmberg at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden.

The Trust Barometer is an annual measurement of trust in social institutions, parties, the mass media and companies. The Barometer was designed by Lennart Weibull and Sören Holmberg, professors at the University of Gothenburg in conjunction with the market research company TNS Gallup. 2008's results were presented on Wednesday at a seminar arranged by Medieakademin in Gothenburg.

The survey was conducted during the period 26/9 - 3/10 and was based on 1,000 responses to an on-line questionnaire. As usual, trust was measured in a number of large institutions. A new feature this year was that trust in the respective leaders was also analyzed.

IKEA retains pole position with 78 percent indicating a lot/quite a lot of trust and Ingvar Kamprad, the founder and outward face of the furniture giant has precisely the same high result. The Swedish Broadcasting Corporation and the Swedish Television Company are second and third in the trust table with 76 and 73 percent respectively. However, here the figures differ substantially between company and leader. Ericsson's CEO Carl-Henrik Svanberg only has a lot/quite a lot of trust among 18 percent of those questioned - which is 35 percent less than that achieved by his company.

The relationship is the reverse when it comes to Sweden's Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt and his party: the Prime Minister's trust capital is ten percent higher than that for his party. Notable results in this year's barometer also include falling trust figures for the European Commission, trade unions and SAS.

Furthermore, the Swedish people feel that reporting by the mass media on the Swedish countryside and the towns where the respondents live is much too negative. A total of 90 percent consider that the media has a lot/quite a lot of influence on Swede's opinions.

Download the Trust Barometer - (in Swedish - but have a look at the diagrams - they make some sense anyway!)

MedieAkademin was set up in 1997 by Göteborgs-Posten (one of Sweden's largest daily papers), the University of Gothenburg, and the media company Forsman & Bodenfors and NFO Infratest (now TNS Gallup). The function of MedieAkademin is to give depth to the media debate and to provide more space for open discussions about society, politics and culture. The MedieAkademin would like to generate a larger number of meetings between researchers and practitioners within all types of media.

Henrik Axlid
+46 31-786 20 21, +46 734-04 20 21

Eva Lundgren | idw
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