Directorate for Public Governance

Webinar Series: Building a New Paradigm for Public Trust


Public trust plummeted after the recession of 2009, giving rise to efforts to map, analyse and understand the main factors driving trust in government and devise appropriate measures to improve it. OECD work shows that high levels of integrity, fairness and openness in institutions are strong predictors of people’s trust in government. Similarly, government’s competence, i.e. its responsiveness and reliability in delivering public services and anticipating new needs as they arise, is crucial for boosting trust in institutions (OECD, 2017)

The Covid-19 crisis is exacerbating existing inequalities, with potential impact on public disengagement, polarization and social unrest. Governments’ recovery measures and the way these will be designed, implemented and communicated, will have a lasting impact on public trust.

The OECD is committed to advancing the measurement of public trust and better understanding linkages between trust and its policy drivers. To this end, we are holding a series of webinars Building A New Paradigm For Public Trust to revisit our analytical framework, and exchange knowledge on relevant policies and practices, by involving policy makers, civil servants, non governmental organizations, private sector, researchers and data providers.


Next webinar

Webinar 3: The Trust Divide: How COVID-19 Exposes the Impact of Inequality on Citizen Confidence in Government
19 October 2020, 3.00-5.00 pm CEST

Registration is now open

The COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated existing inequalities across population groups, including generational, economic and social divides, and created a sense of vulnerability. The aftermath of the health crisis is likely to affect socioeconomic groups differently, with potential impacts including public disengagement, polarization and social unrest. Steering countries out of the crisis without deteriorating the social tissue will rely on people’s perceptions that such policies are fair and worthwhile of popular support.

The webinar will explore how the COVID crisis affects population groups differently and will discuss the tensions that need to be mitigated for harnessing public trust as a force out of the crisis. It will present countries’ approaches to governance and public policies to foster a fair and sustainable recovery that reduce inequalities and restore public trust.



Marta Lagos, Executive Director, Latino Barómetro 
Alejandra Botero, Counsellor to the President, Colombia
Aarnie Aasve, Professor, Bocconi University and Bocconi Covid Crisis Lab, Milan Italy
Carina Autengruber, President, Youth European Forum
Francesc Amat, Research fellow, Institutions and Political Economy Research Group, University of Barcelona  



Elsa Pilichowski, Director, OECD Directorate for Public Governance

Closing Remarks

Jeffrey Schlagenhauf, Deputy Secretary-General, OECD

Previous webinars

Webinar 2: The Ties That Bind: Government Openness As Key Driver Of Trust
11 September 2020, 1.30pm CEST

Citizen trust in government is critical for governments to function effectively and deliver reforms. But trust is a two-way street. Do institutions trust citizens? Are they ready to change their policies to respond to people’s needs and priorities?

This webinar discussed the role of social dialogue and public engagement to build trust between citizens and institutions. It also addressed how digital technologies and data can help design and deliver public services and policies to respond to citizens’ needs and expectations.

Webinar highlights



Monica Ferrín Pereira,  Universidade da Coruña; QDT of the Repeat Module on Democracy, European Social Survey [PPT]
Piero Pelizzaro, Chief Resilience Officer, City of Milan, Italy [PPT]
Frank Leyman, Head International Relations, Federal Public Service Policy and Support, Belgium [PPT]
Ben Page, Chief Executive, Ipsos MORI [PPT]
Jean-Noé Landry, Executive Director, OpenNorth, Canada [PPT]


Will Jennings, University of Southampton and Director TrustGov Project, UK 




Webinar 1 Measuring Public Trust After a Pandemic and Economic Crisis
22 June 2020

The Webinar discussed recent evidence on public trust to challenge existing models for measuring it, and test the fitness of our framework for providing timely, sound and relevant indications to policymakers as they design policies and services for an inclusive and sustainable recovery.

Webinar highlights


Opening Remarks
Opening remarks by Jeffrey Schlagenhauf, OECD Deputy Secretary General

Katju Holkeri, Head of Governance Policy Unit, Ministry of Finance, Finland
Marco Mira D’Ercole, Head of the Household Statistics and Progress Measurement Division, OECD
Tadas Leoncikas, Senior Research Manager, Eurofound
Steven Van de Walle Professor of public management, KU Leuven Public Governance Institute 

Monica Brezzi, Head of Governance Indicators and Performance Evaluation, OECD 


Stay tuned for our next live webinars:

  • Webinar 4: Crisis As Engine Of Public Sector Trust: Opportunities For COVID-19 Recovery - 12 November, 2020 
  • Webinar 5: Institutions, Political Trust and Engagement: Covid-19 and Public Sector Capacity - 14 December 2020