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Large Scale Charitable Giving Experiments: Testing the Complementarities of Competition between Charities
RFF Academic Seminar

Andrew Stocking and Andreas Lange  

This paper presents a randomized field experiment to test the effect on individual decisions to donate money and time when they are solicited by one or two charities. The experiment was run over two years with over 288,000 people across two charitable organizations. The experiment began with donors only solicited by one of the two organizations and then a subset began receiving solicitations from the second organization. In total the two organizations received monetary donations totaling more than $895,000 with over 800,000 instances of voluntary time donations. We find that there is complementarity in generating both time and money donations when individuals are solicited by both organizations rather than just one. With respect to those donors solicited by two organizations, neither organization observed a decrease in monetary contributions and both received statistically more time donations. We find that donors do not sort to the charity for which they have the highest affinity, but instead give more to the two organizations than they originally gave to just one. We did find some evidence of migration to the higher quality organization.


Thursday, September 29, 2011
12 - 1:30 p.m.

Lunch will be provided

7th Floor Conference Center
1616 P St. NW
Washington, D.C. 20036

All seminars will be in the 7th Floor Conference Room at RFF, 1616 P Street NW. Attendance is open, but involves pre-registration no later than two days prior to the event. For questions and to register to an event, please contact Charlotte Pineda at (tel. 202-328-5021). Updates to our academic seminars schedule will be posted at

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