Robert Slonim

The University of Sydney
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
H04 - Merewether
NSW 2006 Australia


NBER Working Papers and Publications

December 2012The Effects of Information, Social and Economic Incentives on Voluntary Undirected Blood Donations: Evidence from a Randomized Controlled Trial in Argentina
with Victor Iajya, Nicola Lacetera, Mario Macis: w18630
In many low- and middle-income countries blood donations per capita are substantially lower than in advanced economies. In these countries blood supply is mostly collected through donations by relatives and friends of individuals needing transfusions or to replace blood used in emergencies. The World Health Organization considers this method of blood supply inefficient compared to undirected voluntary donations. To examine methods to motivate undirected voluntary donations, we ran a large-scale, natural field experiment in Argentina testing the effectiveness of information, social and economic incentives. We find that only higher-valued economic incentives generated more donations, increasing in the value of the incentive. These incentives did not create adverse selection in the safety an...

Published: Social Science & Medicine Volume 98, December 2013, Pages 214–223 Cover image The effects of information, social and financial incentives on voluntary undirected blood donations: Evidence from a field experiment in Argentina Victor Iajyaa, 1, , Nicola Laceterab, 2, , Mario Macisc, , , Robert Slonimd, 3,

December 2011Rewarding Altruism? A Natural Field Experiment
with Nicola Lacetera, Mario Macis: w17636
We present evidence from a natural field experiment involving nearly 100,000 individuals on the effects of offering economic incentives for blood donations. Subjects who were offered economic rewards to donate blood were more likely to donate, and more so the higher the value of the rewards. They were also more likely to attract others to donate, spatially alter the location of their donations towards the drives offering rewards, and modify their temporal donation schedule leading to a short-term reduction in donations immediately after the reward offer was removed. Although offering economic incentives, combining all of these effects, positively and significantly increased donations, ignoring individuals who took additional actions beyond donating to get others to donate would have led to...

Published: "Rewarding Volunteers: A Field Experiment," Management Science, 60(5), 1107–1129, 2014

October 2005Using Experimental Economics to Measure the Effects of a Natural Educational Experiment on Altruism
with Eric Bettinger: w11725
Economic research examining how educational intervention programs affect primary and secondary schooling focuses largely on test scores although the interventions can affect many other outcomes. This paper examines how an educational intervention, a voucher program, affected students' altruism. The voucher program used a lottery to allocate scholarships among low-income applicant families with children in K-8th grade. By exploiting the lottery to identify the voucher effects, and using experimental economic methods, we measure the effects of the intervention on children's altruism. We also measure the voucher program's effects on parents' altruism and several academic outcomes including test scores. We find that the educational intervention positively affects students' altruism towards cha...

Published: Bettinger, Eric and Robert Slonim. "Using Experimental Economics To Measure The Effects Of A Natural Educational Experiment On Altruism," Journal of Public Economics, 2006, v90(8-9,Sep), 1625-1648. citation courtesy of

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