Generosity and Wealth

Experimental Evidence from Bogota Stratification

M. Blanco, Patricio Dalton

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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Abstract

This paper combines laboratory experiments with a unique feature of the city of Bogota to uncover the relationship between generosity and wealth. Bogota is divided by law into six socio-economic strata which are close proxies of household wealth and income. We recruit subjects from different strata and run a series of double-blind dictator games where the recipient is the NGO Techo-Colombia, which builds transitional housing for homeless families. We identify the stratum of each subject anonymously and blindly, and match their donations with their stratum. In a first experiment we provide a fixed endowment to all participants and nd that donations are significantly increasing with wealth. However, in a second experiment, we show that this is not because the rich are
intrinsically more generous, but because the experimental endowment has lower real value for them. With endowments that are equivalent to their daily expenditures, the rich, the middle-class and the poor give a similar proportion of their stratum-equivalent endowment. Moreover, we find that the motivation to donate is similar across strata, where the generosity act is explained mainly by warm-glow rather than pure altruism.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationTilburg
PublisherCentER, Center for Economic Research
Number of pages41
Volume2019-031
Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2019

Publication series

NameCentER Discussion Paper
Volume2019-031

Fingerprint

Wealth
Endowments
Generosity
Donation
Experiment
Socio-economics
Household wealth
Altruism
Middle class
Wealth and income
Non-governmental organizations
Colombia
Household income
Dictator game
Warm glow
Homeless
Expenditure
Proportion
Laboratory experiments

Keywords

  • charitable giving
  • social stratification
  • inequality
  • social preferences
  • dictator game

Cite this

Blanco, M., & Dalton, P. (2019). Generosity and Wealth: Experimental Evidence from Bogota Stratification. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2019-031). Tilburg: CentER, Center for Economic Research.
Blanco, M. ; Dalton, Patricio. / Generosity and Wealth : Experimental Evidence from Bogota Stratification. Tilburg : CentER, Center for Economic Research, 2019. (CentER Discussion Paper).
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Blanco, M & Dalton, P 2019 'Generosity and Wealth: Experimental Evidence from Bogota Stratification' CentER Discussion Paper, vol. 2019-031, CentER, Center for Economic Research, Tilburg.

Generosity and Wealth : Experimental Evidence from Bogota Stratification. / Blanco, M.; Dalton, Patricio.

Tilburg : CentER, Center for Economic Research, 2019. (CentER Discussion Paper; Vol. 2019-031).

Research output: Working paperDiscussion paperOther research output

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Blanco M, Dalton P. Generosity and Wealth: Experimental Evidence from Bogota Stratification. Tilburg: CentER, Center for Economic Research. 2019 Nov 5. (CentER Discussion Paper).