Even when the economic development of a country is taken into account, some nations seem far more generous in their charitable giving than others. What factors explain these national variations?
For the past five years, the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), an international charity that provides services and advice to donors and charities, has been producing the World Giving Index. Using data from the Gallup World Poll, we are able to establish what proportion of people in 135 countries have donated money to charity, volunteered their time, or helped a stranger in the month before being surveyed. In the course of doing this—and through much of our other policy and advocacy work—we have learned a great deal about why some countries appear to be more generous than others. So why do some nations have more charitable populations?