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Documents de travail (2015), ESSEC Business School

“Facta Non Verba”: an Experiment on Pledging and Giving

GROLLEAU G., MATEU G., SUTAN A., VRANCEANU Radu

This paper builds an experiment to investigate whether asking people to state how much they will donate to a charity (to pledge) can increase their actual donation. Individuals’ endowment is either certain or a random variable. We study different types of pledges, namely private, public and irrevocable ones, which differ in individual cost of not keeping a promise. Public pledges appear to be associated to lower donation levels. Irrevocable pledges ensure an amount of donations equal to donations in absence of pledges. Moreover, a significant number of individuals keep their promises, in presence of either private or public pledges. A higher risk attached to the endowment increases donations.

GROLLEAU, G., MATEU, G., SUTAN, A. and VRANCEANU, R. (2015). “Facta Non Verba”: an Experiment on Pledging and Giving. ESSEC Business School.