Charity, signaling, and welfare

Politics, Philosophy and Economics 15 (1):3-19 (2016)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

Voices on the political right have long claimed that the welfare state ought to be kept small, and that charities can take over many of the tasks involved in helping those at the bottom of society. The arguments in favor of this claim are controversial, but even if they are accepted at face value the policy proposal remains problematic. For the proposal presupposes that charities would, in fact, be able to raise enough money to provide adequate help to those in need, and therefore assumes that charities are able to very significantly increase the number and/or size of donations they receive. We argue that there are good reasons for doubting that charities will be able to do this. Our argument turns on the fact that the most powerful strategy for eliciting donations—namely, allowing donors to use their donation to signal their pro-sociality—has an inbuilt upper limit. If too much emphasis is placed on the signaling opportunities donating to charity provides, donating no longer functions as an effective signal and the motivation to donate declines

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 74,509

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Ambiguity in Cooperative Signaling.Carlos Santana - 2014 - Philosophy of Science 81 (3):398-422.
Charity Implies Meta-Charity.Roy Sorensen - 2004 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 68 (2):290 - 315.
Mutual Aid for Social Welfare: The Case of American Fraternal Societies.David T. Beito - 1990 - Critical Review: A Journal of Politics and Society 4 (4):709-736.
Moral Charity.Michael Hartsock & Eric Roark - 2015 - Journal of Value Inquiry 49 (1-2):237-245.
The Right to Welfare and the Virtue of Charity.Douglas J. Den Uyl - 1993 - Social Philosophy and Policy 10 (1):192-224.
Publication Bias in Animal Welfare Scientific Literature.Agnes A. Schot & Clive Phillips - 2013 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 26 (5):945-958.
Publication Bias in Animal Welfare Scientific Literature.Agnes A. van der Schot & Clive Phillips - 2013 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 26 (5):945-958.
The Flow of Information in Signaling Games.Brian Skyrms - 2010 - Philosophical Studies 147 (1):155 - 165.

Analytics

Added to PP
2015-05-19

Downloads
26 (#443,558)

6 months
1 (#417,896)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Citations of this work

Civil Disobedience, Costly Signals, and Leveraging Injustice.Ten-Herng Lai - 2020 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 7:1083-1108.

Add more citations