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Charitable Giving and Nonbinding Contribution-Level Suggestions - Evidence from a Field Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Maja Adena
  • Steffen Huck
  • Imran Rasul

Abstract

When asking for donations, charitable organizations often use suggestions concerning the amount of potential contributions. In our randomized field experiment, opera visitors received solicitation letters asking to support a social youth project organized by the opera house. The three different treatments were: no suggestion and suggestions of €100 and €200, respectively. The findings are that suggestions substantially influence the distribution of donations received. The mean amounts given increase significantly. The increase is stronger in the €200 treatment. On the other hand, the participation rate decreases if a suggestion is made. Overall, the returns from the campaign increase non-significantly.

Suggested Citation

  • Maja Adena & Steffen Huck & Imran Rasul, 2014. "Charitable Giving and Nonbinding Contribution-Level Suggestions - Evidence from a Field Experiment," CESifo Working Paper Series 4654, CESifo Group Munich.
  • Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_4654
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    File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/DocDL/cesifo1_wp4654.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. repec:dau:papers:123456789/1281 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Briers, Barbara & Pandelaere, Mario & Warlop, Luk, 2007. "Adding exchange to charity: A reference price explanation," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 28(1), pages 15-30, January.
    3. Barbara Briers & M. Pandelaere & L. Warlop, 2007. "Adding exchange to charity: a reference price explanation," Post-Print halshs-00126759, HAL.
    4. Desmet, Pierre & Feinberg, Fred M., 2003. "Ask and ye shall receive: The effect of the appeals scale on consumers' donation behavior," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 349-376, June.
    5. Jen Shang & Rachel Croson, 2009. "A Field Experiment in Charitable Contribution: The Impact of Social Information on the Voluntary Provision of Public Goods," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 119(540), pages 1422-1439, October.
    6. Briers, B.M.E. & Pandelaere, M. & Warlop, L., 2007. "Adding exchange to charity : A reference price explanation," Other publications TiSEM 7b0069ad-8251-4e7d-82ba-a, Tilburg University, School of Economics and Management.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Adena, Maja & Huck, Steffen, 2016. "Online fundraising, self-image, and the long-term impact of ask avoidance," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145535, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    2. Altmann, Steffen & Falk, Armin & Heidhues, Paul & Jayaraman, Raji, 2014. "Defaults and Donations: Evidence from a Field Experiment," CEPR Discussion Papers 10303, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Adena, Maja & Huck, Steffen, 2017. "Matching donations without crowding out? Some theoretical considerations, a field, and a lab experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 148(C), pages 32-42.
    4. Altmann, Steffen & Traxler, Christian, 2014. "Nudges at the dentist," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 19-38.
    5. Adena, Maja & Huck, Steffen, 2017. "Matching Donations Without Crowding Out?," Rationality and Competition Discussion Paper Series 16, CRC TRR 190 Rationality and Competition.
    6. Adena, Maja & Huck, Steffen, 2016. "Online fundraising, self-deception, and the long-term impact of ask avoidance," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2016-306, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    7. Adena, Maja & Huck, Steffen, 2016. "A field experiment on crowdfunding for a club good," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2016-308, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    8. Adena, Maja & Alizade, Jeyhun & Bohner, Frauke & Harke, Julian & Mesters, Fabio, 2017. "Quality certifications for nonprofits, charitable giving, and donor's trust: experimental evidence," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2017-302, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    9. Maja Adena, 2016. "Nonprofit organizations, free media and donor’s trust," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 118(3), pages 239-263, July.
    10. Adena, Maja & Huck, Steffen, 2017. "Narrow framing in charitable giving: Results from a two-period field experiment," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change SP II 2017-305, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D12 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Empirical Analysis
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers

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