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Love thy neighbor – religion and prosociality

Love thy neighbor – religion and prosociality PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between religious involvement and attitudinal (importance of helping others and of being socially active) and behavioral components of prosociality (volunteering, charitable giving, and blood donations) in Germany.Design/methodology/approachThe empirical analyses are based on representative, longitudinal data from the German Socio-Economic Panel, which allows avoiding issues of reverse causality.FindingsThe results suggest for a moderate, positive link between individuals’ religious involvement as measured by church affiliation and church attendance and the prosociality aspects addressed. Despite the historic divide in religion, the results in West and East Germany do not differ substantially in terms of the underlying mechanisms.Originality/valueThe paper complements the growing literature from experimental economics on the relationship between individuals’ religiosity and their prosociality. Based on representative longitudinal data, it contributes by providing evidence for Germany for which there is barely any insight yet and by addressing a wider range of attitudinal and (self-reported) behavioral components of prosociality. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Social Economics Emerald Publishing

Love thy neighbor – religion and prosociality

International Journal of Social Economics , Volume 44 (7): 15 – Jul 10, 2017

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0306-8293
DOI
10.1108/IJSE-09-2015-0258
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to investigate the relationship between religious involvement and attitudinal (importance of helping others and of being socially active) and behavioral components of prosociality (volunteering, charitable giving, and blood donations) in Germany.Design/methodology/approachThe empirical analyses are based on representative, longitudinal data from the German Socio-Economic Panel, which allows avoiding issues of reverse causality.FindingsThe results suggest for a moderate, positive link between individuals’ religious involvement as measured by church affiliation and church attendance and the prosociality aspects addressed. Despite the historic divide in religion, the results in West and East Germany do not differ substantially in terms of the underlying mechanisms.Originality/valueThe paper complements the growing literature from experimental economics on the relationship between individuals’ religiosity and their prosociality. Based on representative longitudinal data, it contributes by providing evidence for Germany for which there is barely any insight yet and by addressing a wider range of attitudinal and (self-reported) behavioral components of prosociality.

Journal

International Journal of Social EconomicsEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 10, 2017

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