Happiness More than Wealth Spurs Charity, Says Study

    A man takes out several Australian dollar bills. According to a study, Australia is the world's most charitable country. Photo by: Martin Kingsley / CC BY Martin KingsleyCC BY

    Happier people are more likely to donate money to charitable causes than those who are wealthy, a study by the Charities Aid Foundation reveals.

    The study used a Gallup survey on the charitable behavior of people in 153 countries. It examined the relationship between giving and a nation’s GDP as well as between donating and the happiness of a country’s population.

    Australia and New Zealand led the countries in terms of generosity of their citizens.

    “Donating money to charity is something that is traditionally seen as being driven by how wealthy a person is. However, it is clear that happiness plays an important role in influencing whether people give,” said Richard Harrison, CAF director of research.  

    “The findings suggest a positive cycle where one person gives to charity, the charity improves the happiness of the individuals they support and they in turn are more likely to give,” he added.

    About the author

    • Ma. Rizza Leonzon

      As a former staff writer, Rizza focused mainly on business coverage, including key donors such as the Asian Development Bank and AusAID.