Each year, the average American family donates approximately 3.4 percent of its discretionary income to charity.
Most of these charitable contributions are made from October to December, known as the “giving season” in the nonprofit sector.
So what inspires individuals to donate to charity?
Given the incredible cost to solicit donations – US$1 for every $6 collected – understanding the answer to this question is critical.
The recent election means the stakes are even higher.
The United States is a world leader in contributions to foreign aid.
Yet, there is uncertainty about Donald Trump’s stance on such contributions. The new administration may also provide less support to social programs, such as Planned Parenthood.
As a result, it may be increasingly necessary for charities to step up and raise more money to support these key policy areas.
One factor in understanding people’s decisions to donate to charity is how much money each potential donor has.
Yet, the effect of wealth on charitable giving is not always clear.
In recent research, two colleagues and I tried to find out what makes a person more likely open his or her wallet.