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Volunteer Motivation and Behavior: A Regional Comparison Robert F. Ashcraft Carlton F. Yoshioka ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation.

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Presentation on theme: "Volunteer Motivation and Behavior: A Regional Comparison Robert F. Ashcraft Carlton F. Yoshioka ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation."— Presentation transcript:

1 Volunteer Motivation and Behavior: A Regional Comparison Robert F. Ashcraft Carlton F. Yoshioka ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation Patrick M. Rooney Heidi Frederick Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University Mary McDonald Maria Gajewski Johnson Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership at Grand Valley State University

2 Purpose of Research The purpose of the research was to develop a comparative analysis of volunteer behavior and motivation across Arizona, Michigan and Indiana, utilizing a standardized survey research protocol –Very little research about volunteer behavior across states/regions –Little known about volunteer motivations across states/regions

3 Research Questions Examine whether or not there are differences in volunteering by region (Arizona, Michigan and Indiana) Examine if there are differences in volunteer motivation by region (Arizona, Michigan and Indiana) Examine if these differences in secular volunteering by region (Arizona, Michigan and Indiana) Examine if these differences in religious volunteering by region (Arizona, Michigan and Indiana)

4 Some Research Findings on Volunteering and Gender Gender effects on volunteering consistent in literature –Being female, having more education, and church attendance positively related to volunteering –Women more likely to engage in volunteering than men—regardless of age –Women spend significantly more time and frequency than men volunteering –Women have different interest and commitment than men to volunteering

5 Some Research Findings on Volunteering and Race Race effects on volunteering less consistent –No effect on number of hours volunteered based on race or ethnicity –Racial differences disappear after controlling for education, income and occupational status –Human/Social capital might predict racial differences –Preliminary evidence of minorities more involved in informal philanthropy

6 Some Research Findings on Volunteer Motivations Education, income and gender related to motivation to volunteer Religious involvement related to the motivation to volunteer Age provides inconsistent results across life span Psychological/Functional approach to volunteer motivations –Values, Understanding, Social, Career, Protective and Enhancement

7 Volunteering by Region/State 2007 Volunteering in America (Corporation for National and Community Service) % of adult population that volunteers –Midwest Region 31.1%Utah 43.9% –West 26.1%Nebraska39.8% –South 24.7%Minnesota39.7% –Northeast 23.4%Alaska38.6% –In 1974 West had highest rate by region –California largest number of volunteers and dedicated hours to volunteer service

8 Methodology RDD telephone survey households in AZ, MI and IN Part of project included set of core questions based on Center on Philanthropy Panel Study (COPPS) Total sample size 3,842 –1100 AZ; 1606 IN; 1136 MI In addition AZ and Kent County MI, a listed sample was used to yield additional Hispanic and African American households –Boosted sample was generated by surnames and by high density clustering sample sources

9 Dependent Variables Volunteering –Questions asked about different areas of formal volunteering (through an organization) and frequency of each area –Secular and Religious Volunteering Volunteer Motivation –Major, Minor and No Motivation to Volunteer “Helping on other’s material needs”; “Being asked by a friend or associate”; etc.

10 Independent Variables Age ( 65) Race (Hispanic, White, Black, other) Marital Status (single men/women, married men/women, other) Income ( $100,000) Education (

11 Independent Variables Location (Metropolitan, Rural) Immigration (moved to US before 1987, after 1987) Debt (more than one year of debt payments, less than one year of debt) Home Ownership (owning a home, renting) Business Ownership (owning a business, not owning a business) State (AZ, IN, MI)

12 Data Analysis Weights applied to ensure representativeness based on American Community Survey from US Census Outliers- excluded if three times standard deviation for volunteering hours Volunteering was truncated at zero (no negative hours) Probit Regression- effect of IV on the probability of being a volunteer, holding all other factors constant Tobit Regression- estimate marginal effects on hours volunteered by IV, holding all other factors constant

13 Results: Descriptive Overall Volunteer hours (mean): 209 –AZ-217; IN-190; MI-208 Single Women volunteer hours (mean): 214 –AZ-147; IN-187; MI-261 Church Attendance ( more than once a week ) hours (mean): 247 –AZ-282; IN-208; MI-252 Major Motivation to Volunteer –“An opportunity with your children/family” (%): 67.5 AZ-67.2; IN-72.0; MI-64.9 –“Responsibility of having more to help those with less” (%): 61.5 AZ-53.5; IN-65.5; MI-63.3 –“Religious beliefs” (%): 60.6 AZ-60.6; IN- 62.8; MI-69.5

14 Results: Multivariate Regression Analysis Overall Volunteering No significant statistical differences in volunteering patterns across 3 states after controlling for other factors Age had no significant effect on volunteer hours, but had a significant negative effect on probability to Overall volunteer Retirement had a significant and positive effect on the probability to volunteer and the # of hours volunteered for Overall purposes Full-time and Part-time work have a positive significant effect on the probability to volunteer and # of hours volunteered for Overall purposes Households with income of >$50k are more likely to volunteer than <$50k for Overall volunteering, but no difference in number of hours volunteered Black and Hispanic households were statistically significantly less likely to volunteer Overall and volunteer fewer hours than White households, controlling for other factors Owning your own home was statistically correlated with volunteering more hours Overall

15 Results: Multivariate Secular Volunteering Regression Analysis Limited statistical differences in Secular volunteering patterns across 3 states after controlling for other factors Only in Tobit model for Secular volunteering did living in MI compared to IN show a marginally significant (p=.1) positive effect on volunteer hours Age had significant negative effect on probability to volunteer for Secular purposes Income >$100k was significant for Secular volunteering in both Probit and Tobit models Gender and marital status significant for Secular volunteering: married men were less likely to volunteer and volunteered fewer hours than single women College attendees significant for Secular volunteering: college attendees and those with a B.A. volunteer more hours than those with no college; college attendees more likely to volunteer than those with no college Black and Hispanic households were statistically less likely to volunteer than White households to secular causes and Black households statistically volunteered fewer hours, controlling for other factors Owning your own home was statistically correlated with volunteering more hours to Secular orgs.

16 Results: Multivariate Regression Analysis Religious Volunteering No statistical differences in Religious volunteering across 3 states after controlling for other factors Income $50k-$100k were significant for Religious volunteering in both Probit and Tobit models Gender and Marital Status no significance in Religious volunteering Religious volunteering significant effect with increase in attendance at religious services in both Probit and Tobit models Those with a post-graduate degree were more likely to volunteer and volunteer more hours with Religious orgs. than those with no college; college attendees also volunteered more hours than those with no college, holding other factors constant Hispanic households were less likely to volunteer and volunteer less hours to Religious organizations than white households, holding other factors constant Those who are retired were statistically significantly more likely to volunteer to Religious orgs. than those who were unemployed, holding other factors constant Owning your own business was statistically correlated with volunteering more hours to Religious orgs.

17 Final Thoughts No difference in volunteer motivations across states Religious affiliation not significant when frequency of religious attendance is included Limited effects of gender and marital status State level differences disappeared in most cases except for socio-economic factors: income, education and religiosity (attendance)

18 Next Steps Examine volunteering across the three states on a macro level State Level Indicators for each state –Per capital public expenditures –Volunteer service centers and locations –Voter registration rates (social capital) –Education rates –Others?


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