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What Determines Giving to Hurricane Katrina Victims? Experimental Evidence on Racial Group Loyalty

Author

Listed:
  • Christina M. Fong
  • Erzo F. P. Luttmer

Abstract

We investigate the role of racial group loyalty on generosity in a broadly representative sample of the US adult population. We use an audiovisual presentation to manipulate beliefs about the race, income, and worthiness of Hurricane Katrina victims. Respondents then decide how to divide $100 between themselves and Katrina victims. We find no effects of victims' race on giving on average. However, respondents who report feeling close to their racial or ethnic group give substantially more when victims are of the same race, while respondents who do not feel close to their group give substantially less. (JEL D64, J15, Q54)

Suggested Citation

  • Christina M. Fong & Erzo F. P. Luttmer, 2009. "What Determines Giving to Hurricane Katrina Victims? Experimental Evidence on Racial Group Loyalty," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 1(2), pages 64-87, April.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejapp:v:1:y:2009:i:2:p:64-87
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/app.1.2.64
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Chaim Fershtman & Uri Gneezy, 2001. "Discrimination in a Segmented Society: An Experimental Approach," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 116(1), pages 351-377.
    2. Haile, Daniel & Sadrieh, Karim & Verbon, Harrie, 2006. "Cross-racial Envy and Underinvestment in South Africa," 2006 Annual meeting, July 23-26, Long Beach, CA 21269, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
    3. Fong, Christina, 2001. "Social preferences, self-interest, and the demand for redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 225-246, November.
    4. Corneo, Giacomo & Gruner, Hans Peter, 2002. "Individual preferences for political redistribution," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(1), pages 83-107, January.
    5. DiPasquale, Denise & Glaeser, Edward L., 1998. "The Los Angeles Riot and the Economics of Urban Unrest," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 52-78, January.
    6. Edward L. Glaeser, 2005. "The Political Economy of Hatred," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 120(1), pages 45-86.
    7. Jeffrey Carpenter & Cristina Connolly & Caitlin Myers, 2008. "Altruistic behavior in a representative dictator experiment," Experimental Economics, Springer;Economic Science Association, vol. 11(3), pages 282-298, September.
    8. Bouckaert, Jan & Dhaene, Geert, 2004. "Inter-ethnic trust and reciprocity: results of an experiment with small businessmen," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 869-886, November.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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