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Narrow framing in charitable giving: Results from a two-period field experiment

Maja Adena () and Steffen Huck ()

Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Economics of Change from WZB Berlin Social Science Center

Abstract: Do donors examine a single ask to donate in isolation or do they consider that other and future asks may come along? In the first year of our field experiment, we vary whether or not potential donors are informed that the ask will be repeated in the following year. This information has dramatic effects on the amount given: if present, donations fall by around 40%. This indicates strong support for the prevalence of narrow framing which benefits the fundraiser. In the second year of our experiment we show that previous non-donors behave as if expecting future calls, regardless of whether they have been explicitly told or have simply observed two subsequent asks, that is, they are de-biased through learning. Finally, we document that donors from year 1 tend to give the same amount again in year 2 which generates a long-run effect of initial narrow framing on donation amounts.

Keywords: Charitable giving; natural field experiment; decision framing (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C93 D12 D64 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:zbw:wzbeoc:spii2017305

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