The Economics of Philanthropy: Donations and Fundraising

The Economics of Philanthropy: Donations and Fundraising


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Experts bring economic tools to bear on philanthropic activities, addressing topics that range from the determinants of giving to the effectiveness of fundraising techniques.

Economists are increasingly aware of the need to better understand philanthropic activities. In this book, economists address a variety of topics related to the economics of philanthropy, ranging from the determinants of giving to the effectiveness of fundraising techniques. The contributions focus on individual motives for giving and volunteering, and in particular how they affect donation outcomes, fundraising decisions, and public policies toward giving.

Previous research has viewed motives for giving as embedded in formal models of economic behavior with rational agents who maximize their own utility while constrained by a budget. These models, however, have been shown to have poor predictive power, neglecting direct and indirect motives for giving. The contributors consider, among other subjects, the free-riding problem in these models; altruistic, direct, and indirect motives for giving, addressed both theoretically and with lab experiments; the linear public good game; the role of social information; the effectiveness of matching gifts and premiums; motives for unpaid volunteering; subscription models as a way to regulate revenue streams; and increasing reliance on public funds.

James Andreoni, Jon Behar, Avner Ben-Ner, Ted Bergstrom, Greg Bose, Sarah Brown, Catherine C. Eckel, Christina Gravert, David H. Herberich, Samantha Horn, Fantingyu Hu, Dean Karlan, Ann-Kathrin Koessler, Benjamin M. Marx, Jonathan Meer, Michael Menietti, Bradley Minaker, Mark Ottoni-Wilhelm, A. Abigail Payne, Maria P. Recalde, Kimberley Scharf, Claudia Schwirplies, Marta Serra-Garcia, Sarah Smith, Karl Taylor, Mette Trier Damgaard, Lise Vesterlund, Laura Villalobos

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780262038447
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 08/07/2018
Series: CESifo Seminar Series
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Kimberley Scharf is Professor of Economics at the University of Birmingham, UK.

Mirco Tonin is Professor of Economic Policy on the Faculty of Economics and Management at the Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy.

Kimberley Scharf is Professor of Economics at the University of Birmingham, UK.

Table of Contents

Series Foreword vii

Introduction Kimberley Scharf Mirco Tonin 1

1 Efficient Ethical Rules for Volunteer's Dilemmas Ted Bergstrom 9

2 The Bright and Dark Sides of Altruism Avner Ben-Ner Fangtingyu Hu 31

3 Who Gives? The Roles of Empathy and Impulsiveness James Andreoni Ann-Kathrin Koessler Marta Serra-Garcia 49

4 Charitable Giving in the Laboratory: Advantages of the Piecewise Linear Public Goods Game Michael Menietti María P. Recalde Lise Vesterlund 63

5 Increasing the Social Impact of Giving: An Experiment at Six Universities Claudia Schwirplies Jon Behar Greg Bose 93

6 The Charitable Response to a Nondirected Matching Gift Benjamin M. Marx 119

7 Intuitive Donating: Testing One-Line Solicitations for $1 Donations in a Large Online Experiment Samantha Horn Dean Karlan 133

8 It's Not the Thought That Counts: A Field Experiment on Gift Exchange and Giving at a Public University Catherine C. Eckel David H. Herberich Jonathan Meer 145

9 Charitable Donations of Time and Money: Complements or Substitutes? Evidence from UK Data Sarah Brown Karl Taylor 161

10 The Impact of Government Funded Initiatives on Charity Revenues Bradley Minaker A. Abigail Payne 191

11 Forgetful or Reluctant? Evidence on Reminder Response and Donor Behavior from Panel Data Mette Trier Damgaard Christina Gravert Laura Villalobos 219

12 The Donation Response to Natural Disasters Sarah Smith Mark Ottoni-Wilhelm Kimberley Scharf 239

List of Contributors 263

Index 265

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