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Donor coordination in project funding: evidence from a threshold public goods experiment
Journal of Public Economics (2015)
  • Luca Corazzini
  • Paola Valbonesi
  • Christopher Cotton
We present results from an experiment with multiple public goods, where each good produces benefits only if total contributions to it reach a minimum threshold. The presence of multiple public goods makes coordination among participants more difficult, discouraging donor participation and decreasing the likelihood of any public good being effectively funded. Applied to the case of fundraising, the results show how overall donations and the number of effectively funded projects may both decrease as the total number of projects vying for funding increases. The analysis considers whether making one of the contribution options salient, either through its merits or by arbitrarily choosing one to feature during the experiment, helps overcome the increased coordination problem. The results have implications for the growing popularity of crowdfunding websites, and suggest the benefits to these sites of helping donors compare and identify the most promising projects.
  • Threshold public goods,
  • multiple public goods,
  • laboratory experiment,
  • charities,
  • fundraising
Publication Date
Spring May, 2015
DOI: 10.1016/j.jpubeco.2015.05.005
Publisher Statement
under the referees' process
Citation Information
Luca Corazzini, Paola Valbonesi and Christopher Cotton. "Donor coordination in project funding: evidence from a threshold public goods experiment" Journal of Public Economics Vol. forthcoming (2015)
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