Crowdfunding offers an innovative approach to financing projects by facilitating many individuals and organizations to contribute, often small amounts, to these projects. In the context of donation-based crowdfunding, we study how social distance affects average donations. Drawing on construal level theory, we argue that project images featuring humans reduce the social distance for donors because donors can better identify with the recipients; thus, these campaigns are more concrete, and donors give more. To test the effect of social distance using (human) project images on average donations, we conducted two studies, one observational and one experimental study. In both studies, we show that projects, whose images feature humans, receive higher donations.

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Keywords Bayesian analysis, Construal level theory, Donation-based crowdfunding, Experiment, Social distance
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Conference 40th International Conference on Information Systems, ICIS 2019
Weinmann, M, & Mishra, A. (2019). The effect of social distance in donation-based crowdfunding. In 40th International Conference on Information Systems, ICIS 2019. Retrieved from