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The Effect of Neighbourhood Diversity on Volunteering: Evidence from New Zealand

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Abstract

An empirical literature has found that neighborhood heterogeneity lowers people's likelihood of contributing to public goods. We show that the estimated effect of any concave neighborhood characteristic on behavior may be biased when “large” rather than “small” neighborhoods are used. Large boundaries omit the effect of differences between small neighborhoods, biasing a characteristic's total effect even when the omitted differences lack economic effect. We next use three New Zealand census rounds to test whether volunteering rates are lowered by neighborhood heterogeneity by race/ethnicity, birthplace, income or language. We find boundaries matter, with only ethnic/racial heterogeneity robustly associated with lower volunteering.

Suggested Citation

  • Jeremy Clark & Bonggeun Kim, 2009. "The Effect of Neighbourhood Diversity on Volunteering: Evidence from New Zealand," Working Papers in Economics 09/09, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
  • Handle: RePEc:cbt:econwp:09/09
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    File URL: http://www.econ.canterbury.ac.nz/RePEc/cbt/econwp/0909.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. James Alm & Jeremy Clark & Kara Leibel, 2016. "Enforcement, Socioeconomic Diversity, and Tax Filing Compliance in the United States," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 82(3), pages 725-747, January.
    2. James Alm & Jeremy Clark & Kara Leibel, 2011. "Socio-economic Diversity, Social Capital, and Tax Filing Compliance in the United States," Working Papers in Economics 11/35, University of Canterbury, Department of Economics and Finance.
    3. John Gibson & Geua Boe-Gibson, 2014. "Capitalizing Performance of 'Free' Schools and the Difficulty of Reforming School Attendance Boundaries," Working Papers in Economics 14/08, University of Waikato.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    heterogeneity; neighbourhood effects; volunteering;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers
    • H31 - Public Economics - - Fiscal Policies and Behavior of Economic Agents - - - Household

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