Will There Be Blood? Incentives and Displacement Effects in Pro-social Behavior
We present evidence from nearly 14,000 American Red Cross blood drives and from a natural field experiment showing that economic incentives have a positive effect on blood donations without increasing the fraction of donors who are ineligible to donate. The effect increases with the incentive's economic value. However, a substantial proportion of the increase in donations is explained by donors leaving neighboring drives without incentives to attend drives with incentives; this displacement also increases with the economic value of the incentive. We conclude that extrinsic incentives stimulate prosocial behavior, but unless displacement effects are considered, the effect may be overestimated. (JEL D64, H41, I12)
Volume (Year): 4 (2012)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
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Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Carl Mellström & Magnus Johannesson, 2008.
"Crowding Out in Blood Donation: Was Titmuss Right?,"
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- Lacetera, Nicola & Macis, Mario, 2009.
"Do All Material Incentives for Prosocial Activities Backfire? The Response to Cash and Non-Cash Incentives for Blood Donations,"
IZA Discussion Papers
4458, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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- John A. List, 2011. "The Market for Charitable Giving," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 25(2), pages 157-80, Spring.
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