Public Spending and Volunteering: "The Big Society", Crowding Out, and Volunteering Capital
AbstractThe current British Government's "Big Society" plan is based on the idea that granting more freedom to local communities and volunteers will compensate for a withdrawal of public agencies and spending. This idea is grounded on a widely held belief about the relationship between government and volunteering: a high degree of government intervention will cause a crowding out of voluntary activity. Up to now, however, the crowding out hypothesis has hardly been supported by any empirical evidence or solid theoretical foundations. We develop a simple theoretical model to predict how fiscal policy affects the individual decision to volunteer or not. The predictions of the model are tested through the econometric analysis of two survey data sets, and interpretative analysis of narratives of local volunteers and public officials. Contrary to conventional wisdom, our results suggest that volunteering, by the individuals in the actively working population, declines when government intervention is decreased.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 29730.
Date of creation: 19 Mar 2011
Date of revision:
Volunteering; Labor Supply; Public Goods; Altruism.;
Other versions of this item:
- Koen P.R. Bartels & Guido Cozzi & Noemi Mantovan, 2011. "Public Spending and Volunteering: "The Big Society", Crowding Out, and Volunteering Capital," Working Papers 2011_09, Durham University Business School.
- H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household
- H41 - Public Economics - - Publicly Provided Goods - - - Public Goods
- I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
- J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
- D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2011-04-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-CBE-2011-04-02 (Cognitive & Behavioural Economics)
- NEP-PBE-2011-04-02 (Public Economics)
- NEP-SOC-2011-04-02 (Social Norms & Social Capital)
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