Can I Trust You to Trust Me? A Theory of Trust, Monitoring, and Cooperation in Interpersonal and Intergroup Relationships

Document Type



Behavioral and Organizational Sciences (CGU)

Publication Date



Organization Development | Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Drawing on the diverse literatures of game theory, negotiation, interpersonal trust, and interorganizational relationships, the authors develop a theoretical model of the relationships among trust, monitoring, and cooperation in interpersonal and intergroup interactions. They use the concept of isomorphism as a basis for developing this theory, observing that although the constructs may differ in structure across levels, they may still have similar functions. They also argue that a more explicit distinction between own and other's trust, own and other's monitoring, and own and other's cooperation is critical for better understanding the relationships among trust, monitoring, and cooperation. By making this distinction between own and other and by drawing on four distinct literatures, the authors provide greater precision in how trust, monitoring, and cooperation are defined, and they provide a more comprehensive and variegated view of the relationships among the constructs through the development of specific research propositions. They conclude with potential contributions of the model for future research and practice.

Rights Information

© 2007 SAGE Publications