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Monday, December 29, 2008

Do Men & Women Give to Charity Differently?

According to Texas A&M University marketing professor Karen Winterich, which charitable groups a person decides to donate money to is based on two factors: gender and moral identity (how important it is to that person to be caring, kind, fair, and honest).
American women with low moral identities are more likely to give charitably to an "ingroup"—with which they share an obvious connection, such as physical proximity or ethnicity (like the victims of Hurricane Katrina). Women with higher moral identities are more likely to give equally to both ingroups and "outgroups," which may have nothing more than humanity in common with the donor (victims of the India Ocean tsunami, for example). On the other hand, men with low moral identities are likely not to give at all, while men with higher moral identities give charitably to ingroups but seldom to outgroups. The study, which will appear in the Journal of Consumer Research, builds on previous research that shows those will low moral identity focus more on themselves, while those with high moral identity focus more on others. —Heather Wax