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Economic evaluation: The effect of money and economics on attitudes about volunteering

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  • Pfeffer, Jeffrey
  • DeVoe, Sanford E.

Abstract

Recent research shows that hourly payment affects decisions about time use in ways that disfavor uncompensated activities such as volunteering. This paper extends that argument by showing that the activation of money and economics as aspects of a person's self-concept is one mechanism possibly producing these results. Study 1 showed that employed adults explicitly primed to think about their own time in terms of money were less willing to volunteer compared to those primed to think about another person's time in terms of money, illustrating the importance of the self-concept in the economic evaluation of time. Mediation analyses showed that participants' view of themselves as economic evaluators fully accounted for both the effect of the manipulation and variation in prior experience with hourly payment on willingness to volunteer. Study 2 showed the undergraduates supraliminally primed with either money or economic concepts were less willing to volunteer their time. The findings suggest that economic evaluation is one causal mechanism affecting attitudes about time use.

Suggested Citation

  • Pfeffer, Jeffrey & DeVoe, Sanford E., 2009. "Economic evaluation: The effect of money and economics on attitudes about volunteering," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 500-508, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:joepsy:v:30:y:2009:i:3:p:500-508
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Leclerc, France & Schmitt, Bernd H & Dube, Laurette, 1995. " Waiting Time and Decision Making: Is Time like Money?," Journal of Consumer Research, Oxford University Press, vol. 22(1), pages 110-119, June.
    2. Robert H. Frank & Thomas Gilovich & Dennis T. Regan, 1993. "Does Studying Economics Inhibit Cooperation?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 7(2), pages 159-171, Spring.
    3. Kay, Aaron C. & Wheeler, S. Christian & Bargh, John A. & Ross, Lee, 2004. "Material priming: The influence of mundane physical objects on situational construal and competitive behavioral choice," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 95(1), pages 83-96, September.
    4. Small, Deborah A. & Loewenstein, George & Slovic, Paul, 2007. "Sympathy and callousness: The impact of deliberative thought on donations to identifiable and statistical victims," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 102(2), pages 143-153, March.
    5. John R. Carter & Michael D. Irons, 1991. "Are Economists Different, and If So, Why?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 5(2), pages 171-177, Spring.
    6. DeVoe, Sanford E. & Pfeffer, Jeffrey, 2007. "When time is money: The effect of hourly payment on the evaluation of time," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 104(1), pages 1-13, September.
    7. Lea, Stephen E.G. & Webley, Paul, 2005. "In search of the economic self," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 585-604, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Vanessa Mertins & Susanne Warning, 2013. "Gender Differences in Responsiveness to a Homo Economicus Prime in the Gift-Exchange Game," IAAEU Discussion Papers 201309, Institute of Labour Law and Industrial Relations in the European Union (IAAEU).
    2. Teng, Fei & Chen, Zhansheng & Poon, Kai-Tak & Zhang, Denghao & Jiang, Yuwei, 2016. "Money and relationships: When and why thinking about money leads people to approach others," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 137(C), pages 58-70.
    3. Whillans, Ashley V. & Dunn, Elizabeth W., 2015. "Thinking about time as money decreases environmental behavior," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 127(C), pages 44-52.
    4. Anna Olga Kuzminska, 2014. "Konsekwencje aktywizacji kategorii zwiazanych z wladza i pieniedzmi (The consequences of activation of categories associated with power and money)," Problemy Zarzadzania, University of Warsaw, Faculty of Management, vol. 12(45), pages 66-80.
    5. repec:eee:ecolec:v:141:y:2017:i:c:p:119-126 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Gasiorowska, Agata, 2012. "Psychologiczne skutki aktywacji idei pieniędzy a obdarowywanie bliskich
      [The psychological consequences of mere exposure to money and gift-giving]
      ," MPRA Paper 48170, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Bohns, Vanessa K. & Newark, Daniel A. & Xu, Amy Z., 2016. "For a dollar, would you…? How (we think) money affects compliance with our requests," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 134(C), pages 45-62.

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    Keywords

    Economics Money Time Volunteering;

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