NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by J. Forrest Williams

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

Working Papers and Chapters

May 2014Social Distance and Quality Ratings in Charity Choice
with Alexander L. Brown, Jonathan Meer: w20182
We conduct a laboratory experiment to examine how third-party ratings impact charity choice and donative behavior, particularly in regards to preferences for local charities. Subjects are given a menu of ten charities, with a mix of local and non-local organizations included. We vary whether third-party ratings are displayed on this menu. Subjects perform an effort task to earn money and can choose to donate to their selected charity. We find evidence that subjects' choice of charity is impacted by third-party evaluations but, somewhat surprisingly, there are no obvious preferences for local charities. These third-party assessments have some impact on the percent of earnings that subjects allocate to their selected charity; local charities also accrue more donations, though these results a...
May 2013Why Do People Volunteer? An Experimental Analysis of Preferences for Time Donations
with Alexander L. Brown, Jonathan Meer: w19066
We conduct a laboratory experiment to test if there are differences in behavior when subjects can donate either time or money to charity. Our subjects perform an effort task to earn money. In one condition they can have their efforts accrue to a charity instead of themselves. In other conditions subjects may only earn money for their private account but then donate it to a charity. We vary the timing and availability of donation opportunities in the monetary donation settings to test the impact of subtle solicitation pressure. We find that subjects with a more opportunities to donate will donate more often and in larger amounts. Further, subjects giving effort to charity give far more than subjects who give monetary donations – between two and five times as much, on average. We posit that ...

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

 
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