Quality of life

Societal change and trust in institutions - Executive summary

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The decade since the Great Recession has been seen as signalling a ‘crisis of trust’ in European societies, involving a decline in trust in people and institutions. In the aftermath of the financial crisis, governments in all Member States struggled to curb unemployment, manage public debt, and return to economic growth. In many countries, this led to a feeling of distrust in national political institutions and in EU institutions. In the European context, the erosion of trust in institutions has given rise to questions about the potential impact on political and social stability, as well as the implications for European integration. While some citizens and political interests blamed the EU for the problems caused by the economic crisis, a decline in trust in national governments was also apparent. Read more in the report - see Related content.

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