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With money on the mind, people work harder and longer before asking for help and are more reticent to help others.  This self-sufficiency orientation elicits less prosocial behavior, such as the willingness to volunteer or donate to causes. Marketing professor Kathleen Vohs’ research finds that money acts as a psychological resource that changes people’s motivations. In a series of lab experiments, primed subjects subtly exposed to the concept of money are more motivated by their own goals and are less socially focused.  Vohs spoke at Small Steps, Big Leaps, a special research briefing convened by Professors Francis Flynn and Jennifer Aaker and their colleagues in the field of prosocial behavior. They presented practical and cost-effective solutions for encouraging donations, volunteerism, social activism, and responsible, caring and other prosocial behaviors.

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