The socioeconomic foundations of generosity in Britain

Yaojun Li

My interest in generosity came about from my research on social mobility, ethnic integration and social capital in British society. I found a lot of studies on specific aspects of generosity, but no systematic analysis on the interrelationship between people’s socio-economic position, different facets of generosity (volunteering, helping and giving) and their consequences on people’s socio-political behaviour. Many of the studies only use rather simple descriptive techniques on overall patterns of giving or volunteering without exploring their underpinnings or their impacts. Thus I wish to conduct a fairly systematic study on the interrelationships of causes, manifestations and consequences of generosity in Britain using the most authoritative sources (the Citizenship Survey from 2001 onward) and most appropriate techniques.

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