Horizon, Host: Ted Simons

December 9, 2010

Host: Ted Simons

Arizona's Philanthropy

  • A new ASU report details how philanthropic Arizona residents are. Carlton Yoshioka, of the ASU Lodestar Center, discusses the report.
  • Carlton Yoshioka - ASU Lodestar Center
Category: Business/Economy

View Transcript

Ted Simons:
This is the season of giving and a new report shows how philanthropic Arizona residents are. Nearly 700 households were surveyed for the Arizona 2010 giving and volunteering report. Released by ASU’s Lodestar philanthropy and nonprofit innovation. Here to talk about the report is a professor at ASU's school of resources, Carlton Yoshioka, part of the college of public programs.

Carlton Yoshioka:
Thanks for inviting me.

Ted Simons:
Why was household philanthropy looked at?

Carlton Yoshioka:
We do -- to give use inspired -- we did a giving and volunteering and this information, we think is effective if decision makers, non-profit professionals can use it to make good decisions and the giving, volunteering is usually a national perspective, but Indiana, a couple other states have done their own state to make sure the data is more specific to Arizona and we decided that this is our third attempt at looking at what happens in terms of giving and volunteering. We look at generosity, that's probably a better term, in terms of our -- our residents of Arizona.

Ted Simons:
Indeed. What was looked at specifically and what was found?

Carlton Yoshioka:
We looked at overall giving and asked many questions related to formal giving which is a perspective that is easier to measure but I'll say later it leaves out the informal giving, that some of the population probably would enhance their overall giving percentages. So we asked questions right after tax time, so to speak, to say what is your giving to charitable organization, formal giving and not so much individual giving related to personal and friends. And we found that generally Arizonans give a little bit less than national average and that might be due to the recession and other factors that are more recent. When we compare back to other studies, unfortunately, this particular study is more of a different methodology, done with a panel study and the previous two studies were done with ran deposit digit dialing or telephone surveys, that's more representative. So this one did have a different result in giving and volunteering so we can't exactly say what made the difference. But probably the recession.

Ted Simons:
Was it fewer people giving and volunteering or more people giving and volunteering but doing it less.

Carlton Yoshioka:
Good point. That's the point of probably more giving but giving smaller amounts. In that sense, it does reflect -- it could reflect the methodology, but we think it reflects the recession and it's impacting.

Ted Simons:
How were non-monetary giving quantified.

Carlton Yoshioka:
We asked them, money, values, but also in terms of goods and services that they donated, other means of giving that adds up in terms of value, and the easiest is money, and we would look at and have them quantify the value. Maybe donated a piece of property or something to a organization, that helps them out.

Ted Simons:
The report also focused on Hispanic population. Why was that done?

Carlton Yoshioka:
We knew in most studies whether we do them or nationally, when you just do a random sampling, you still under-represent the Hispanic population. We get 20% or less. And we know the Arizona Hispanic population is closer to 30%. So we over-sampled and, of course, found out informal giving, Hispanics give less than dominant white population. Because that's not surprising, it's found across the country. But again, I would say it's probably less because of the informal giving was not addressed, not asked. And we just know that Hispanics, extended families and helping friends and neighbors is considerable and we missed that part, we believe.

Ted Simons:
You mentioned previous reports in '03 and '08?

Carlton Yoshioka:

Ted Simons:
What was done with those reports and what do you plan now to do with this report? What do you want people to take from all of this?

Carlton Yoshioka:
It's a baseline, all three, and hopefully, the last one, we'll do another, hopefully, indicators panel methodology with the Morrison institute so we can compare it with this particular study and get a better judge of what is happening based on recession, and other factors, but we think that Arizonans stack up nicely in terms of -- we get bad publicity from other situations in our state, but looking at Arizonans in particular, they do a nice job of generosity, helping others in the community. Throughout the state. So that's what we say. And that's a good message.

Ted Simons:
Yes. What surprised you most out of all of this?

Carlton Yoshioka:
I think the volunteering data. It was higher than the national average and then, again, we looked at just formal volunteering and I think the surprising part about it, and we've done additional research and looking, if you give, you tend to volunteer, so there's a connection between the two and that's part of this generosity, it's hard to separate those two and we do, because it's two different sets of the survey, but it does suggest there's a lot of -- a lot of commonality out there and also a lot of complexity that we still haven't got -- the challenges we do quantitative research and the next steps as you're asking would be slowing down and doing more qualitative measures, asking particular families what they do and so we can get at that richness. Right now we ask people give us figures and numbers. Some people don't answer the phone and the data is probably adequate for now, but looking at doing something different if the future.

Ted Simons:
Quickly, if there's a headline from this study, what would it be?

Carlton Yoshioka:
Arizonans still generous, still helping each other.

Ted Simons:
Very good. Thanks for joining us, good stuff. Thank you.

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