John List

Principal Investigator

Department of Economics.
University of Chicago

Bio: John List is the Homer J. Livingston Professor and Chairman in the Department of Economics at the University of Chicago. He also holds a position as a National Bureau of Economic Research Associate. John has previously served as a Senior Economist on the President's Council of Economic Advisers (2002-2004).

John has pioneered field experiments as a methodology for learning about behavioral principles that are shared across different domains. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed research publications, providing insights into charitable giving, public goods provision, and valuation of non-marketed goods and services. John received the 2010 Kenneth Galbraith Award and the 2008 Arrow Prize for Senior Economists for his research in behavioral economics in the field. Overall, data John has collected has provided insights into incentives for education, pricing behavior, discrimination in the marketplace, the valuation of non-marketed goods and services, public goods provision, and importantly, charitable giving.

As the PI of SPI, John plans to lead the team in generating knowledge in the field of philanthropy and bridging the gap between research and practice by forming collaborative partnerships. John's research on philanthropy has been showcased in various media outlets such as the Wall Street Journal, Chronicle of Philanthropy, and the New York Times.

Publications and Working Papers

#TitleDatePublishedSPI Funded
1.The Importance of Being Marginal: Gender Differences in Generosity Dec 2014
2.Toward an Understanding of why Suggestions Work in Charitable Fundraising: Theory and Evidence from a Natural Field Experiment Dec 2014
3.How Can Bill and Melinda Gates Increase Other People’s Donations to Fund Public Goods? Dec 2014
4.The Hidden Benefits of Control: Evidence from a Natural Field ExperimentDec 2014
5.The Role of Social Connections in Charitable Fundraising: Evidence from a Natural Field ExperimentDec 2014
6.Testing for Altruism and Social Pressure in Charitable Giving Dec 2014
7.Introduction to field experiments in economics with applications to the economics of charityDec 2014
8.Matching and Challenge Gifts to Charity: Evidence from Laboratory and Natural Field Experiments Dec 2014
9.Is a Donor in Hand Better than Two in the Bush? Evidence from a Natural Field ExperimentDec 2014
10.Does Price Matter in Charitable Giving? Evidence From a Large-Scale Natural Field ExperimentDec 2014
11.Putting Behavioral Economics to Work: Testing for Gift Exchange in Labor Markets Using Field ExperimentsDec 2014
12.Toward an Understanding of the Economics of Charity: Evidence from a Field ExperimentDec 2014
13.The Effects of Seed Money and Refunds on Charitable Giving: Experimental Evidence from a University Capital Campaign Dec 2014
14.Exploring the Origins of Charitable Acts: Evidence from an Artefactual Field Experiment with Young ChildrenDec 2014
15.The Market for Charitable GivingDec 2014
16.On the Interpretation of Giving in Dictator GamesDec 2014
17.Introduction to Charitable Giving and Fundraising Special issueDec 2014
18.A fundraising mechanism inspired by historical tontines: Theory and experimental evidenceDec 2014
19.The impact of challenge gifts on charitable giving: an experimental investigationDec 2014
20.Using Lotteries To Finance Public Goods: Theory And Experimental EvidenceDec 2014
21.What Do Laboratory Experiments Measuring Social Preferences Reveal about the Real World?Feb 2015
22.Young, selfish, and male: Field evidence of social preferencesJan 2015
23.Field experimentsDec 2014
24.Once and Done: Leveraging Behavioural Economics to increase Charitable Giving ContributionsJan 2015
25.The Curious Relation Between Theory of Mind and Sharing in Preschool Age ChildrenApr 2015
26.On the Origins of Dishonesty: From Parents to ChildrenJan 2015