Trust as a mechanism to increase individual “docility”: A theoretical approach

Paola Ossola (Department of Economics, University of Insubria)

International Journal of Organization Theory & Behavior

ISSN: 1093-4537

Publication date: 1 March 2013


In order to reach their goals organizations need to establish relationships with other organizations, and cooperate with them. The success of such initiatives relies on the exchange of suggestions, advice, and information. This behavior has been labeled as ’docile’ (word borrowed from the work of the late Herbert Simon). This paper elaborates on determinants of docile behavior and introduces a model that is based on trust mechanisms. The theoretical model supports the claim that trust enhances the likelihood that docile behavior appears. The study also shows that organizations may benefit from higher levels of docility that increase the chances of success when cooperation and external partnerships are established.


Ossola, P. (2013), "Trust as a mechanism to increase individual “docility”: A theoretical approach", International Journal of Organization Theory & Behavior, Vol. 16 No. 4, pp. 495-520.

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