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Institutional Affiliation: Cornerstone Research
Information about this author at RePEc
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|May 2020||Robbing Peter to Pay Paul: Understanding How State Tax Credits Impact Charitable Giving|
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Donations to charity are widely encouraged by policymakers through targeted tax incentives such as tax credits for contributions only to qualifying causes. We use a framed field experiment to test how the largest such program, Arizona’s state income tax credit for donations to qualifying charities, affects donation decisions in a modified dictator game. In the experiment, we randomize whether subjects receive detailed information about the tax credit program prior to selecting potential recipients and completing the allocation task. We also vary the number of charities that subjects can select as recipients along with the (tax-credit) qualifying vs. non-qualifying composition of the choice set. We find that average giving is unaffected by the information provision and composition of the ch...
|April 2017||Harnessing Policy Complementarities to Conserve Energy: Evidence from a Natural Field Experiment|
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The literature has shown the power of social norms to promote residential energy conservation, particularly among high usage users. This study uses a natural field experiment with nearly 200,000 US households to explore whether a financial rewards program can complement such approaches. We observe strong impacts of the program, particularly amongst low-usage and low-variance households, customers who typically are less responsive to normative messaging. Our data thus suggest important policy complementarities between behavioral and financial incentives: whereas non-pecuniary interventions disproportionately affect intense users, financial incentives are able to substantially affect the low-user, “sticky households.”
|March 2017||Do The Effects of Social Nudges Persist? Theory and Evidence from 38 Natural Field Experiments|
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This study examines the mechanisms underlying long-run reductions in energy consumption caused by a widely studied social nudge. Our investigation considers two channels: physical capital in the home and habit formation in the household. Using data from 38 natural field experiments, we isolate the role of physical capital by comparing treatment and control homes after the original household moves, which ends treatment. We find 35 to 55 percent of the reductions persist once treatment ends and show this is consonant with the physical capital channel. Methodologically, our findings have important implications for the design and assessment of behavioral interventions.