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Time Is Money: Choosing between Charitable Activities

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  • Naomi E. Feldman

Abstract

This paper analyzes the impact of a preferential tax-price for monetary donations on the joint decision to donate time (volunteer) and money. The methodological approach takes into account that consumption of each charitable good affects consumption of the other. Using data from a national survey on household charitable giving, the results show that donations of time and money are substitutes. However, a decrease in the tax-price of monetary donations also has a positive effect on donations of time that acts outside the change in relative prices. This more than offsets the substitution effect leading to an overall positive correlation between the two charitable goods. (JEL D64, H24, H31)

Suggested Citation

  • Naomi E. Feldman, 2010. "Time Is Money: Choosing between Charitable Activities," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 2(1), pages 103-130, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:aea:aejpol:v:2:y:2010:i:1:p:103-30
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/pol.2.1.103
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Duncan Boldy, 1999. "Contribution," World Scientific Book Chapters,in: Monitoring, Evaluating, Planning Health Services, chapter 25, pages 261-262 World Scientific Publishing Co. Pte. Ltd..
    2. Scott M. Lynch & Bruce Western, 2004. "Bayesian Posterior Predictive Checks for Complex Models," Sociological Methods & Research, , vol. 32(3), pages 301-335, February.
    3. Reece, William S, 1979. "Charitable Contributions: New Evidence on Household Behavior," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(1), pages 142-151, March.
    4. Feldstein, Martin & Clotfelter, Charles, 1976. "Tax incentives and charitable contributions in the United States : A microeconometric analysis," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(1-2), pages 1-26.
    5. Gerald E. Auten & Holger Sieg & Charles T. Clotfelter, 2002. "Charitable Giving, Income, and Taxes: An Analysis of Panel Data," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 92(1), pages 371-382, March.
    6. Freeman, Richard B, 1997. "Working for Nothing: The Supply of Volunteer Labor," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 15(1), pages 140-166, January.
    7. Browning, Martin & Deaton, Angus & Irish, Margaret, 1985. "A Profitable Approach to Labor Supply and Commodity Demands over the Life-Cycle," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 53(3), pages 503-543, May.
    8. Brown, Eleanor & Lankford, Hamilton, 1992. "Gifts of money and gifts of time estimating the effects of tax prices and available time," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 321-341, April.
    9. Tiehen, Laura, 2001. "Tax Policy and Charitable Contributions of Money," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association;National Tax Journal, vol. 54(4), pages 707-723, December.
    10. Boskin, Michael J & Feldstein, Martin S, 1977. "Effects of the Charitable Deduction on Contributions by Low Income and Middle Income Households: Evidence from the National Survey of Philanthropy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 59(3), pages 351-354, August.
    11. Randolph, William C, 1995. "Dynamic Income, Progressive Taxes, and the Timing of Charitable Contributions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 103(4), pages 709-738, August.
    12. Tiehen, Laura, 2001. "Tax Policy and Charitable Contributions of Money," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 54(n. 4), pages 707-23, December.
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    14. Duncan, Brian, 1999. "Modeling charitable contributions of time and money," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 213-242, May.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • H24 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Personal Income and Other Nonbusiness Taxes and Subsidies
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household

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