Conceptualization and operationalization of notion “trust” for applied sociological research

Rubtcova M.V.

Dr. Sci. (Sociol.), Associate prof. of the department of social management and planning, St. Petersburg State University, St. Petersburg, Russia.

Vasilieva E.A.

Academy of Science, Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Yakutsk, Russia

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Rubtcova M.V., Vasilieva E.A. Conceptualization and operationalization of notion “trust” for applied sociological research. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2016. No 1. P. 58-65


Sociology poses the problem of quantitative interpretation of qualitative research. The article deals with institutional and lexical context method based on corpus linguistics considered as one of the solution tools. Based on “Grounded theory” methodology (Strauss A., Corbin J.) and partly conceptual analysis (Sartory G., Goertz G.), we propose to start the definition of the concept with quantitative research. The authors identified useful areas of corpus linguistics in analysis of social management phenomenon and distinguish between methods of corpus linguistics and sociological content analysis: direct appeal to everyday use of the language increases objectivity of the research; a corpus provides large representative data; possibility of diachronic and synchronic comparative studies; the method itself is not time consuming and expensive. We chose the concept “trust” to demonstrate the cooperation possibilities between corpus linguistics and sociological research methodology. The data for the study comes from Russian National Corpus (Russian). As a result of research we conclude that concept “trust” is used in the context of political institution and that the personal features are less important than formal status. Moreover, we have found new contexts, for example, a “telephone of trust” (telephone hotline), which is used to report crimes.

trust; sociological operationalization; conceptualization; institutionally-lexical context; corpus linguistics
Content No 1, 2016