Princeton University Library Catalog

Which Path to Righteousness? The Socio-economic Determinants of Volunteering and Donating: A Canadian Case Study

Pachisia, Sejal [Browse]
Senior thesis
Hammer, Jeffrey [Browse]
Princeton University. Department of Economics [Browse]
Class year:
102 pages
Restrictions note:
Walk-in Access. This thesis can only be viewed on computer terminals at the Mudd Manuscript Library.
Summary note:
This paper explores the socio-economic determinants of volunteering and donating in Canada using the Canadian Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating from 2004, 2007 and 2010. Multivariate analysis confirms previous literature’s findings that that older, richer, more educated, and religious individuals engage in more pro-social behavior. The hours worked per week do not impact donations significantly, but cause volunteering to decrease, though individuals who work over 50 hours a week volunteer more than expected. Women are more likely to volunteer and donate than men, but gender differences are most interesting among the unemployed. Marriage and having children also affects men and women differently. The difference in contributions depending on an individual’s religiosity persists even when I only include contributions to institutions unassociated with any religion. Donations to religious institutions, however, are less income elastic and less influenced by fluctuations in an individual’s work hours. There is a general complementarity between volunteering and donating; those who do more of one, tend to do more of the other. While past researchers have used this as a basis to dismiss individual substitution between volunteering and donating, this paper finds signs that such a trade-off can still exist. It is premature to conclude that there is no substitution without an analysis of individual wage rates, which is a limitation in this paper as well. However, findings show that those who work long hours at high income jobs prefer to give money instead of volunteering, are more likely to make above average contributions in donations, but have low levels of volunteering and have a higher ratio of donations to volunteering.