Harnessing a "natural tendency": No surprise that donors who feel "sense of belonging" are the ones who give more financially.

"I work at the nonprofit Yale University, and the higher purpose of education is a major reward for me. Many teachers and others in the helping professions share that feeling. They have consciously chosen to make less money than they could in the private sector, because they feel they are contributing to a greater good. Philanthropic causes could do more to gain from this natural tendency. Yes, charities have already been very inventive in strategies to encourage donations, but they’ve been limited by institutional and legal structures that they take as a given. Fortunately, charities now have a chance to look at some new organizational paths to giving, some of which have benefited from research in behavioral economics." -- Robert J. Shiller, the New York Times