A Scholarly Study Examines Gender Differences in Giving Behavior

bag_of_moneyResearch by scholars at the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Chicago and published by the National Bureau of Economic Research examined gender differences in altruism and social pressure. The study found that men and women were equally generous when approached by direct solicitation to contribute to a charitable cause. But when pressured women tend to give more but when an easy way out is apparent, women tend to give less.

“When put under pressure, women many give more, and contribute more to public goods because they are more likely to be on the margin and hence sensitive to an extra push,” the authors write. “But women become less generous when it becomes easy to avoid the solicitor. They may say no if given a simple option to do so.”

The paper, “The Importance of Being Marginal: Gender Differences in Generosity” is available online here. It will be published in the May issue of the American Economic Journal: Papers and Proceedings.

Filed Under: Research/Study


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