The Matthew Effect in American Generosity? Examining Inequality in Philanthropic Capacity Across Place and Time with Chao Guo, Ph.D.
This research examines the inequality in philanthropic capacity across American communities in the past decades, particularly the extent to which local nonprofit sectors serving disadvantaged communities might “lock in” the path of “philanthropic desert” over time. It sheds light on a potential self-reinforcing process across space and time—the “Matthew Effect”—that might further reproduce the disparities across communities. We develop and analyze multiple national panel datasets of giving to local nonprofit sectors from 2000 to 2019 by merging nonprofit data from IRS tax data (e-filing and NCCS) and community indicators from the census at the county level. The results reveal and visualize the longitudinal patterns of giving to local nonprofit sectors, especially those that serve disadvantaged communities along the socioeconomic, racial, and ecological lines.
Chao Guo is Professor and Faculty Director of Master’s in Nonprofit Leadership (NPL) Program in the School of Social Policy and Practice at the University of Pennsylvania. Chao’s research interests focus on the intersection between nonprofit and voluntary action and government. He has many published articles in highly respected and influential journals, and has published two books: Social Entrepreneurship: An Evidence-Based Approach to Creating Social Value (Wiley, 2014; co-authored with Wolfgang Bielefeld); and The Quest for Attention: Nonprofit Advocacy in a Social Media Age (Stanford University Press, 2020; co-authored with Gregory D. Saxton). His research has been recognized by his peers and won awards from multiple disciplines.
Chao is actively involved in professional and community service activities. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) (2009-2015). He has also served as a co-Editors-in-Chief of Nonprofit & Voluntary Sector Quarterly, the premier journal in the field (2016-2022). Globally, he has helped ARNOVA create a regional conference series in Asia (ARNOVA-Asia). In 2019, he received the Distinguished Achievement and Service Award from ARNOVA. At Penn, he serves as Faculty Director of Penn Restorative Entrepreneurship Program (PREP), an innovative program geared towards helping formerly incarcerated individuals become entrepreneurs, participate in civic engagement, and advocate for social justice.
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