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The contextual‐level effects of social trust on health in transitional countries: Instrumental variable analysis of 26 countries


The International Journal of Health Planning and Management

Published online on


We analyse the effect of contextual‐level social capital on health status in a sample of 26 transitional countries of Central and South Europe, Mongolia, and the former Soviet Union for 2006‐2010 (N = 51 911). Contextual‐level social capital is conceptualized as country‐level social trust, while health status is conceptualized as self‐rated health. We use ordinary least squares and instrumental variable regressions to address endogeneity and especially to rule out reverse causality. Both instrumental variable and ordinary least squares regressions suggest a strong positive effect of country‐level trust on health. This finding is consistent for the whole sample as well as separate regional estimations.