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Vol. 37, No. 3, 2010
Issue release date: June 2010
Section title: Review Article · Übersichtsarbeit
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Transfus Med Hemother 2010;37:149–154

Prosocial Motivation and Blood Donations: A Survey of the Empirical Literature

Goette L. · Stutzer A. · Frey B.M.
aDépartement of Economics, University of Lausanne, bDepartment of Business and Economics, University of Basel, cBlood Transfusion Service SRC, Schlieren-Zürich, Switzerland

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Recent shortages in the supply of blood donations have renewed the interest in how blood donations can be increased temporarily. We survey the evidence on the role of financial and other incentives in eliciting blood donations among donors who are normally willing to donate pro bono. We present the predictions from different empirical/psychological-based theories, with some predicting that incentives are effective while others predict that incentives may undermine prosocial motivation. The evidence suggests that incentives work relatively well in settings in which donors are relatively anonymous, but evidence indicates also that when image concerns become important, incentives may be counterproductive as donors do not want to be seen as greedy.


Author Contacts

Prof. Dr. Lorenz Goette, Département d’économie politique et économétrie, Université de Lausanne, Bâtiment Internef, 1015 Lausanne-Dorigny, Switzerland,


Article Information

Received: April 7, 2010
Accepted: May 5, 2010
Published online: May 25, 2010
Number of Print Pages : 6


Publication Details

Transfusion Medicine and Hemotherapy

Vol. 37, No. 3, Year 2010 (Cover Date: June 2010)

Journal Editor: Sibrowski W. (Münster)
ISSN: 1660-3796 (Print), eISSN: 1660-3818 (Online)

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Review Article · Übersichtsarbeit

Received: 4/7/2010
Accepted: 5/5/2010
Published online: 5/25/2010

Number of Print Pages: 6
Number of Figures: 0
Number of Tables: 0

ISSN: 1660-3796 (Print)
eISSN: 1660-3818 (Online)

For additional information:

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