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Entrust we must: The role of 'trust' in Somali economic life

Research output: Other contribution

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Entrust we must : The role of 'trust' in Somali economic life. / Carrier, Neil; Elliott, Hannah .

26 p. Copenhagen : Danish Institute for International Studies. 2018, Working Paper. (GOVSEA Paper Series; Vol. 2018, No. 2).

Research output: Other contribution

Harvard

Carrier, N & Elliott, H Entrust we must: The role of 'trust' in Somali economic life,Danish Institute for International Studies, Copenhagen.

APA

Vancouver

Author

Carrier, Neil ; Elliott, Hannah . / Entrust we must : The role of 'trust' in Somali economic life. 26 p. (GOVSEA Paper Series; 2).

Bibtex

@misc{568fbc3d66014668b0ee04cad15abaac,
title = "Entrust we must: The role of 'trust' in Somali economic life",
abstract = "‘Trust’ is a concept that has received much attention in studies of informaleconomies which operate in large part outside of formal state regulation. Somalitrade provides a pertinent case. In Somalia, across Somali East Africa and beyond, business has thrived, in spite of – or, some would argue, partially because of – the statelessness of the homeland. Beyond scholarly uses, ‘trust’ is also a concept used by Somalis themselves to explain their entrepreneurial success. This Working Paper asks what the concept of ‘trust’ reveals and conceals about Somali economic life, examining the concept in both its etic and emic uses. It does so drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Eastleigh, an estate in Nairobi’s Eastlands, whose economy is, in many ways, exemplarily ‘informal’, and driven by Somali enterprise and capital investments. We argue that while the concept of ‘trust’ can help explain the social relations underpinning trade, and in particular the provision of credit, trust is not a prerequisite for acts of trusting in business. Rather, acts of trusting can themselves work to produce trust, even though they do not eliminate deceit and mistrust in the estate. Trust in its emic usage emerges as a normative rather than descriptive discourse that creates a moral impetus for acts of trusting, even as ‘trusters’ may not necessarily fully trust those they do business with. In Eastleigh, an important driver of this discourse is the demand for credit, which itself plays a crucial role in driving the estate’s economy.",
keywords = "Migration and development, Peace and conflict, Fragile states, Conflict and economy, Kenya, Somalia",
author = "Neil Carrier and Hannah Elliott",
year = "2018",
month = "6",
day = "18",
language = "English",
series = "GOVSEA Paper Series",
publisher = "Danish Institute for International Studies",
number = "2",
type = "Other",

}

RIS - suitable for import to EndNote

TY - GEN

T1 - Entrust we must

T2 - The role of 'trust' in Somali economic life

AU - Carrier, Neil

AU - Elliott, Hannah

PY - 2018/6/18

Y1 - 2018/6/18

N2 - ‘Trust’ is a concept that has received much attention in studies of informaleconomies which operate in large part outside of formal state regulation. Somalitrade provides a pertinent case. In Somalia, across Somali East Africa and beyond, business has thrived, in spite of – or, some would argue, partially because of – the statelessness of the homeland. Beyond scholarly uses, ‘trust’ is also a concept used by Somalis themselves to explain their entrepreneurial success. This Working Paper asks what the concept of ‘trust’ reveals and conceals about Somali economic life, examining the concept in both its etic and emic uses. It does so drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Eastleigh, an estate in Nairobi’s Eastlands, whose economy is, in many ways, exemplarily ‘informal’, and driven by Somali enterprise and capital investments. We argue that while the concept of ‘trust’ can help explain the social relations underpinning trade, and in particular the provision of credit, trust is not a prerequisite for acts of trusting in business. Rather, acts of trusting can themselves work to produce trust, even though they do not eliminate deceit and mistrust in the estate. Trust in its emic usage emerges as a normative rather than descriptive discourse that creates a moral impetus for acts of trusting, even as ‘trusters’ may not necessarily fully trust those they do business with. In Eastleigh, an important driver of this discourse is the demand for credit, which itself plays a crucial role in driving the estate’s economy.

AB - ‘Trust’ is a concept that has received much attention in studies of informaleconomies which operate in large part outside of formal state regulation. Somalitrade provides a pertinent case. In Somalia, across Somali East Africa and beyond, business has thrived, in spite of – or, some would argue, partially because of – the statelessness of the homeland. Beyond scholarly uses, ‘trust’ is also a concept used by Somalis themselves to explain their entrepreneurial success. This Working Paper asks what the concept of ‘trust’ reveals and conceals about Somali economic life, examining the concept in both its etic and emic uses. It does so drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in Eastleigh, an estate in Nairobi’s Eastlands, whose economy is, in many ways, exemplarily ‘informal’, and driven by Somali enterprise and capital investments. We argue that while the concept of ‘trust’ can help explain the social relations underpinning trade, and in particular the provision of credit, trust is not a prerequisite for acts of trusting in business. Rather, acts of trusting can themselves work to produce trust, even though they do not eliminate deceit and mistrust in the estate. Trust in its emic usage emerges as a normative rather than descriptive discourse that creates a moral impetus for acts of trusting, even as ‘trusters’ may not necessarily fully trust those they do business with. In Eastleigh, an important driver of this discourse is the demand for credit, which itself plays a crucial role in driving the estate’s economy.

KW - Migration and development

KW - Peace and conflict

KW - Fragile states

KW - Conflict and economy

KW - Kenya

KW - Somalia

M3 - Other contribution

T3 - GOVSEA Paper Series

PB - Danish Institute for International Studies

CY - Copenhagen

ER -