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Deadlines, Procrastination, and Inattention in Charitable Giving: A Field Experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Stephen Knowles

    () (Department of Economics, University of Otago, New Zealand)

  • MaroÅ¡ Servátka

    () (Department of Economics and Finance, University of Canterbury, New Zealand)

  • Trudy Sullivan

    () (Department of Economics, University of Otago, New Zealand)

Abstract

We conduct a field experiment to analyze the effect of deadline length on charitable giving. Subjects are invited to complete an online survey, with a donation going to charity if they do so. Participants are given either one week, one month or no deadline by which to respond. Donations are lower for the one month deadline, than for the other two treatments, consistent with the model of inattention developed in Taubinsky (2014) and also with the idea that not specifying a deadline conveys urgency.

Suggested Citation

  • Stephen Knowles & MaroÅ¡ Servátka & Trudy Sullivan, 2014. "Deadlines, Procrastination, and Inattention in Charitable Giving: A Field Experiment," Working Papers 1501, University of Otago, Department of Economics, revised Mar 2014.
  • Handle: RePEc:otg:wpaper:1501
    as

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    File URL: http://www.otago.ac.nz/economics/otago088472.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2015
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Huck, Steffen & Rasul, Imran, 2011. "Matched fundraising: Evidence from a natural field experiment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(5-6), pages 351-362, June.
    2. Matthew Rabin & Ted O'Donoghue, 1999. "Doing It Now or Later," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 89(1), pages 103-124, March.
    3. Mette Trier Damgaard & Christina Gravert, 2014. "Now or never! The effect of deadlines on charitable giving: Evidence from a natural field experiment," Economics Working Papers 2014-03, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
    4. Knowles, Stephen & Servátka, Maroš, 2015. "Transaction costs, the opportunity cost of time and procrastination in charitable giving," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 125(C), pages 54-63.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

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    Cited by:

    1. Damgaard, Mette Trier & Gravert, Christina, 2017. "Now or never! The effect of deadlines on charitable giving: Evidence from two natural field experiments," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 66(C), pages 78-87.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    charitable giving; deadline effects; procrastination; inattention; field experiment;

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • D64 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Altruism; Philanthropy; Intergenerational Transfers

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