India Leads in Trust for Businesses and NGOs, ranks 4th in Media and 5th for Government: Edelman Trust Barometer 2024

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Davos: India tops the charts in terms of trust in businesses and NGOs, but it is fourth in terms of trust in media and fifth for the government, an annual trust barometer showed on Monday.

The Edelman Trust Barometer 2024, released here ahead of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting, put Saudi Arabia on the top for trust shown by their people in the government and China for trust in media.

In terms of trust shown in one's employer, Indonesia emerged at the top followed by India at the second place.

The 24th annual survey, which covered over 32,000 respondents across 28 countries, showed developing countries having a lead over developed ones in terms of overall trust perception of their respective populations.

On the overall index, prepared on the basis of average per cent trust in NGOs, business, government and media, India moved to second place from fourth in 2023, while China retained its top spot.

The UK replaced South Korea as the least trusted nation. The survey also showed less trust for companies headquartered in global powers.

An estimated 63 per cent globally were found to be worried that government leaders are purposely trying to mislead people by saying things they know are false or gross exaggeration, while the figure stood at 61 per cent for business leaders and 64 per cent for journalists.

Many believe that science is losing its independence to government, funders, and the political process, the survey found.

In the US, two-thirds believe science has become politicized (67 per cent) and in China, three-quarters of respondents say that government and organizations that fund research have too much influence on how science is done (75 per cent).

Fear of an information war (61 per cent) jumped by six points from last year, the biggest increase among societal fears.

The government was found to be distrusted in 17 of the 28 countries surveyed, including the US, Germany and the UK. Media remained the least trusted institution globally and was found to be distrusted in 15 of 28 countries including the US, Japan and the UK.