'Trusting-to' and 'trusting-as': a qualitative account of trustworthiness

Joshua James Clarke Kelsall*

*Corresponding author for this work

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1 Citation (Scopus)
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Abstract

Philosophical accounts of trustworthiness typically define trustworthiness as an agent being reliable in virtue of a specific motivation such as goodwill. The underlying thought motivating this view is that to be trustworthy is to be more than merely reliable. If motivational accounts are correct, this is a problem for non-motivational accounts of trustworthiness, as motivations are not required for trustworthiness. In this paper, I defend the non-motivational approach to trustworthiness and show that the motivational approach is inadequate. I do this by making a novel distinction between trusting-to and trusting-as relations. A trusting-to relation is a relation in which a trustor ‘X’ trusts the trustee ‘Y’ to do something. Trusting-as relations are an overlooked relation implicit in all trusting-to relations. They describe the social relationship that holds between X and Y. I will argue that trusting-as relations determine whether any specific motivations are required for trustworthiness trusting-to relations. Thus, I show that acknowledging trusting-as relations enables us to provide a satisfactory explanation of the motivation intuition without making specific motivations constitutive features of trust.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages25
JournalInquiry - An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy
VolumeLatest Articles
Early online date24 May 2022
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24 May 2022

Keywords

  • Philosophy of trust
  • Trustworthiness
  • Motivations
  • Commitments

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