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Time-Inconsistent Charitable Giving

James Andreoni () and Marta Serra-Garcia

No 22824, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: We motivate this paper with a puzzle. When we asked subjects to give five dollars to charity today, about 30 percent agree, but when the donation would instead be paid in one week, giving increases by 50 percent. The puzzle is that received models of self-control cannot explain this time-inconsistent charitable giving. This suggests a new approach is needed for intertemporal pro-sociality. We present one solution to the puzzle in a theoretical model and two new experiments. Our explanation relies on the rich dynamics of warm glow, and specifically image concerns, in prosocial behavior.

JEL-codes: C91 D64 D9 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2016-11
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp
Note: PE
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Published as Andreoni, James & Serra-Garcia, Marta, 2021. "Time inconsistent charitable giving," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 198(C).

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