Blood donor behaviour, motivations and the need for a systematic cross-cultural perspective: the example of moral outrage and health- and non-health-based philanthropy across seven countries

Eamonn Ferguson, Laszlo Dorner, Christopher R. France, Janis L. France, Barbara Masser, Michael Lam, Elena Marta, Sara Alfieri, Eva-Maria Merz, Byron Adams, Elisabeth Huis in ’t Veld, Josianne Scerri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

Background
Blood donation is a prosocial altruistic act that is motived by the mechanisms that underlie altruism (e.g. warm‐glow, reciprocity, fairness/trust). Because there is consistent evidence that altruism and its mechanisms show cross‐cultural variability, in the present paper we make the case for a cross‐cultural perspective in blood donor research.

Methods
We analyse a subset of variables from a larger study, with samples drawn from seven countries (England, Malta, the Netherlands, Australia, the USA, Hungary, Italy: average N per country = 282). This subset of variables focuses on health (organ donor registration) and non‐health (volunteering, donating money) philanthropy, family traditions of helping and moral outrage as predictors of blood donor status.

Results
We show two cross‐cultural universals: (1) organ donor registration in opt‐in countries is positively associated with blood donor status and (2) non‐health philanthropy is generally unrelated to blood donor status. We also show two country‐specific effects: (1) a family tradition for helping is associated with blood donor status in Italy only and (2) moral outrage is a predictor only in the USA.

Conclusions
We contend that these findings provide proof of principle why a cross‐cultural perspective on blood donor behaviour is needed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)375-383
JournalISBT Science Series
Volume13
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

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