Peter Thisted Dinesen



I study social and political attitudes and behavior. Although I am a political scientist by training, my research falls in the intersection between political science, sociology and psychology. In my work I look at how various social and political attitudes are formed.

My primary topic of interest has been in generalized social trust – trust in other people we don’t know – which is often thought to be an important civic attitude underpinning a well-functioning democracy. If people trust unknown others, they are also likely to act more civically – e.g. pay taxes, recycle, or volunteer – with positive consequences for society as a whole.

I have, inter alia, examined the consequences of ethnic diversity for social trust, which embodies the larger question about whether social cohesion of Western societies is threatened by increased immigration by people with different ethnic background.

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