Charity among parents is affected by the sex of their first child, claims a new study which finds that parents who have a first-born son and have two or more children are more likely to give larger amounts than people whose first-born is a daughter. Many previous studies have found that parents influence their children’s generosity. The new research expands that sphere of influence to include how children affect generosity among their parents.
“The sex of the first-born child affects the likelihood that the parents will give to charity, the amount they give, and the types of causes and organisations they support,” said Debra Mesch, director of Women’s Philanthropy Institute (WPI) at Indiana University.
The researchers found that parents who have a first-born son and have two or more children are more likely to give, and give 14.3 per cent larger amounts than people whose first-born child is a daughter.
Also, parents who have a daughter who is an only child are more likely to give to charity, and they give 20.3 per cent higher amounts than parents of a son who is an only child.
People whose only child is a daughter give more to education and basic needs, while people whose first-born child is a son give more to education, youth and family services, it found.
“Research in several fields has examined how the sex of a child affects parents’ behaviour, but this is the first study to ask this question about philanthropy,” said co-principal investigator professor Mark