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Directed Giving: Evidence from an Inter-Household Transfer Experiment

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  • Catia Batista

    ()
    (Faculdade de Economia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa and IZA)

  • Dan Silverman

    ()
    (Arizona State University and NBER)

  • Dean Yang

    ()
    (Department of Economics and Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, University of Michigan, NBER, and BREAD)

Abstract

We investigate the determinants of giving in a lab-in-the-field experiment with large stakes. Study participants in urban Mozambique play dictator games where their counterpart is the closest person to them outside their household. Dictators share more with counterparts when they have the option of giving in kind (in the form of goods), compared to giving that must be in cash. Qualitative post-experiment responses suggest that this effect is driven by a desire to control how recipients use gifted resources. Standard economic determinants such as the rate of return to giving and the size of the endowment also affect giving, but the effects of even large changes in these determinants are significantly smaller than the effect of the in-kind option. Our results support theories of giving where the utility of givers depends on the composition (not just the level) of gift-recipient expenditures, and givers thus seek control over transferred resources.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London in its series CReAM Discussion Paper Series with number 1321.

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Date of creation: Sep 2013
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Handle: RePEc:crm:wpaper:1321

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Keywords: sharing; altruism; giving; dictator game; inter-household transfers; Mozambique;

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References

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  1. Catia Batista & Gaia Narciso, 2013. "Migrant Remittances and Information Flows: Evidence from a Field Experiment," CReAM Discussion Paper Series, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London 1331, Centre for Research and Analysis of Migration (CReAM), Department of Economics, University College London.
  2. Nava Ashraf & Diego Aycinena & Claudia Martínez & Dean Yang, 2011. "Remittances and the Problem of Control: A Field Experiment Among Migrants from El Salvador," Working Papers, University of Chile, Department of Economics wp341, University of Chile, Department of Economics.
  3. Abigail Barr & Garance Genicot, 2007. "Risk Sharing, Commitment and Information: An experimental analysis," Economics Series Working Papers, University of Oxford, Department of Economics WPS/2007-17, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
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  17. Dean Yang, 2011. "Migrant Remittances," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 25(3), pages 129-52, Summer.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Dean Karlan, Aishwarya Lakshmi Ratan, Jonathan Zinman, 2013. "Savings by and for the Poor: A Research Review and Agenda-Working Paper 346," Working Papers, Center for Global Development 346, Center for Global Development.
  2. Catherine C. Eckel & David Herberich & Jonathan Meer, 2014. "A Field Experiment on Directed Giving at a Public University," NBER Working Papers 20180, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Catia Batista & Gaia Narciso, 2014. "Migrant Remittances and Information Flows: Evidence from a Field Experiment," Norface Discussion Paper Series, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London 2014001, Norface Research Programme on Migration, Department of Economics, University College London.

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