Skip to main content

Table 6 Comparison of different scholars’ classification of motivation to grant trust or legitimacy or the process in which this takes place, based on the principal’s perceptions about the agent and its conduct

From: Conceptual framework for increasing legitimacy and trust of sustainability governance

Category of motives Description of motivation or process leading to granting of legitimacy or trust, based on the principal’s perception of the following: Scholars (principle–agent)
Aristotlea Max Weberb Mark C. Suchmanc Thomson and Boutilierd Burlea and Tomée
(Individual-individual) (Individual-public authority) (Society-institution) (Stakeholder-corporation) (Individuals- organisations)
Observation Coherent, understandable, and meaningful activities or automatic conformance with developments in societal priorities Cognitive legitimacy
Competence, rule of law Rational authority Competent trust
Value Positive normative judgment, shared values, and perceived benefits for society   Moral legitimacy Socio–political legitimacy
Perceived high level of personal virtuousness and integrity Charismatic authority   Referential trust
Tradition Tradition, and what has always been there (feudalism, religion) Traditional authority
Family or group identity    Identitary trust
Altruism Enduring mutual regard for each other’s interests Friendship due to goodness Institutionalised trust (identification) Affective trust
  Reciprocity in interactions, where the agent listens and responds to the needs of the principal, keeps promises and engages in mutual dialogue Interactional trust Optimistic or mutual trust
Egoism, hedonism Achieving self-interested benefits Useful friendship Pragmatic legitimacy Economic legitimacy Opportunistic trust
Achieving pleasure Pleasant friendship
  1. aKraut [176]
  2. bSmith [177]
  3. cSuchman [178], Cashore and Stone [179], Burlea and Popa [180], Nielsen [181]
  4. dThomson and Boutilier [100], Boutlilier and Thomson [99], Gehman et al. [157]
  5. eBurlea and Tomé [150]