Dire Straits v The Cure: Emphasising the Problem or the Solution in Charitable Fundraising for International Development
Clark, Jeremy; Garces-Ozanne, Arlene; Knowles, Stephen
We conduct a laboratory experiment to test the effect on charitable donations to international development NGOs (INGOs) of emphasising current deprivation in a developing country, versus emphasising the potential good a donation can achieve. Using a double-blind dictator experiment with earned endowments, we find that varying the information/emphasis has no significant effect on total donations, or on the probability of donating. An emphasis on current deprivation does, however, significantly raise the variance of donations, so that conditional on donating, it significantly raises donations compared to emphasising potential gains from the charity’s work.
Publisher: University of Otago
Series number: 1608
Keywords: charitable giving; dictator game; message strategy
Research Type: Discussion Paper
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