No SDES-2017-23
Title Religiosity may not be a panacea: Importance of prosociality to maintain humanitarian donations
Author Shibly Shahrier, Koji Kotani and Makoto Kakinaka
Abstract Past literature examines determinants of charitable activities and shows that prosocial and religious people provide more contribution. However, when an individual faces opportunities of multiple donations, an interplay among them in the context of substitutability or complementarity, along with limited sources extrinsically and intrinsically, can matter on her choice. In this paper, we study this phenomenon for religious and humanitarian donations by analyzing a survey-experiment data from a developing country, Bangladesh. Our result finds that as the degree of religiosity is intensified, people tend to donate more to religious activities at the expense of humanitarian donation. We argue that such different effects of religiosity originate from limited sources for donations and the substitutability between humanitarian and religious donations. The analysis also presents that social value orientation is an important predictor for humanitarian donation, but not for religious donation, such that prosocials donate more for humanitarian activities than the proselfs. Our results conclude that to maintain humanitarian donations, religiosity may not be a panacea but prosociality is rather needed for a society. Given the argument that ongoing modernization makes people become less prosocial and thus might dissatisfy the growing needs of humanitarian activities that require prosocial behaviors, some policy device is necessary to sustain humanitarian donations in developing countries of Asia and Africa since they are becoming modernization in a faster speed.
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