Today is Patriots Day in Massachusetts- yes, this is actually a state holiday, but what it really means is that the Greater Boston area shuts down for the running of the Boston Marathon. The Boston Marathon is one of the most popular marathons in the world, and it is one of the few marathons to still have a qualifying time requirement. However, slow people like me can circumvent the qualifying issue by raising money for a charity and getting a number that way. I chose to raise money for Boston Partners in Education (not surprising given my background), and I am still in the process of raising the required $3000. As an economist, the motivation for charitable giving is a bit of a foreign concept to me, but I also know that I support organizations with a valuable mission, so who knows.
As part of the fundraising process, there is a prize for the person that gets the most individual donations. As such, I bring a contribution request to you, even if it’s just $1, $5, or whatever. In return I will continue to entertain you with my economic wisdom. (Ok, I will continue to entertain you regardless, but you get the idea.)
You can donate online via firstgiving.com. You can also track my progress in the race here- my number is 21868. The race starts at 10:30am for us slow people, and I will be Twittering updates (@jodiecongirl) as I go!
Also, a funny picture from after the Hampton Beach half marathon last fall…and yes, I really needed a corn dog…
Lastly, in the spirit of the occasion, here are some links about the economics of charitable giving:
“What Makes People Give” by David Leonhardt, in the NYT (I probably should have read this earlier!)
An Undercover Economist article about charitable giving in recessions, published just two days ago
A report on charitable giving from the St. Louis Federal Reserve
An Undercover Economist article entitled “The Economic Case Agaist Philanthropy” – oh wait, don’t read that one until later