Maja Adena How Is Charitable Giving Influenced by Suggestions of a Contribution-Level?

Maja Adena is a Postdoctoral Researcher in economics. She received her PhD from the Free University Berlin, where she worked as a research fellow until 2012. Ever since, Adena worked with the Social Science Research Centre Berlin (WZB), where she acts not only as a researcher, but also as a member of the academic council. Adena’s research interests reach from applied microeconomics to political economy and behavioural economics with a more specific interest in the economy of non-profit and charitable organisations.

Area of Research

Applied Microeconomics, Political Economy, Behavioral Economics

since 2012

Research Fellow

Berlin Social Science Centre (WZB) (more details)

Markets and Choice Research Unit


Research Fellow

Free University of Berlin (Freie Universität Berlin)

Department of Economics


Research Fellow

CenEA, Poland


PhD in Economics

Free University of Berlin (Freie Universität Berlin)

Department of Economics


Diploma in Economics

Free University of Berlin (Freie Universität Berlin)

Department of Economics


Master in Management Science

Poznan University of Economics, Poland

- European Economic Review

- European Journal of Ageing

- Economic Journal

- Explorations in Economic History

- Journal of Economics

- Journal of Public Economics

- Management Science

- Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly


Berlin Social Science Centre (WZB)

The WZB Berlin Social Science Center investigates societal change. The research focus is on problems of modern societies in a globalized world. Research areas include education and work, migration and the dynamics of political systems, market and choice, international politics and law. WZB research is theory-based, problem-oriented, often long-term and mostly based on international comparisons. Around 160 German and international researchers work at the WZB, including sociologists, political scientists, economists, legal scholars and historians. Research results are published for the scientific community as well as for experts in politics, business, the media and civic organizations. As a non-university research institute, the WZB is member of the Leibniz-Association. The WZB closely cooperates with universities in Berlin and beyond as well as with research institutions abroad. The WZB was founded in 1969 by members of the German parliament. The WZB is funded by the Federal government, he state of Berlin, and the community of German states. (Source: WZB)


Markets and Choice

"Research in this area focuses on economic decision making and its societal consequences. It examines the role of institutions and markets and studies economic learning, development and social evolution. It considers the profound interaction of psychology and economics and is often interdisciplinary in nature. Applications include the analysis of political processes, the emergence of prosocial behavior, and market design, in particular for matching problems." (Source)


The field experiment presented in this video shows that the level of donations can be raised by suggesting a concrete contribution amount to potential donors. As MAJA ADENA explains, the effects were threefold: the average donation level rose, the different suggested amounts were respectively donated more often in the treatment groups during the experiment, and they were still more often after the experiment, when no amounts were suggested anymore.

LT Video Publication DOI:

Charitable Giving and Nonbinding Contribution-Level Suggestions Evidence from a Field Experiment

  • Maja Adena, Steffen Huck and Imran Rasul
  • Review of Behavioral Economics
  • Published in 2014
Maja Adena, Steffen Huck and Imran Rasul. "Charitable Giving and Nonbinding Contribution-Level Suggestions Evidence from a Field Experiment." Review of Behavioral Economics 3 (2014): 1-19.