Former US President George W. Bush accepted the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Zuckerberg, and Kermit the Frog joined in. UK Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama paid to avoid it.Beyond the Ice Bucket Challenge
Paper Agentic Appeals Act As a Catalyst for Giving among the Affluent
Recent research suggests that affluent individuals adopt agentic self-concepts, striving to stand out from others and to master the environment on their own. The present study provides a road test of this idea, showing that this theorizing can be utilized to increase charitable giving among the affluent, when individuals do not realize that their behavior is being studied. In a naturalistic field experiment conducted as part of an annual fundraising campaign (N = 12,316), we randomly assigned individuals from an affluent sample to view messages focused on agency (vs. communion). Messages that focused on personal agency (vs. communion) increased the total amount of money that individuals in the sample donated by approximately 82%. These findings provide evidence for a simple, theoretically-grounded method of encouraging donations among those with the greatest capacity to give.
Published in: PloS One
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