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Charitable giving by the poor: A field experiment in Kyrgyzstan

Maja Adena (), Rustamdjan Hakimov and Steffen Huck

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

Abstract: Previous studies of charitable giving have focused on middle- or high-income earners in Western countries, neglecting the poor, although the lowest income groups are often shown to contribute substantial shares of their income to charitable causes. In a large-scale natural field experiment with over 180,000 clients of a micro-lending company in Kyrgyzstan, we study charitable giving by a population that is much poorer than the typical donors studied so far. In a 2x2 design, we explore two main (pre-registered) hypotheses about giving by the poor: (i) that they are more price sensitive than the rich such that, in contrast to previous studies, matching incentives induce crowding in of out-of-pocket donations; (ii) that they care about their proximity to the charitable project. We find evidence in favor of the former but not the latter.

Keywords: Charitable giving; field experiments; matching donations (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C93 D12 D64 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp, nep-soc and nep-tra
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:zbw:wzbeoc:spii2019305r

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