Doing good deeds : a multi-dimensional model of volunteerism

Schanning, Kevin Francis, Department of Sociology, University of Virginia
Kingston, Paul W., Department of Sociology, University of Virginia
Guterbock, Thomas, Department of Sociology, University of Virginia
Culver, Teresa, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Virginia

This study constructs and tests a multi-dimensional model of volunteerism. The model is premised on the idea that volunteerism is contingent upon a combination of motivations, capacities, and opportunities. The three sets of indicators utilized to assess the relative importance of each of these predictors are external contextual factors, internal contextual factors and situational factors. Using various measures of each of these factors, the study estimates a logistic regression model of volunteerism utilizing a sample of college students.

Results indicate that volunteerism among college students is positively related to external contextual factors including the degree to which parents emphasized responsibility for those less fortunate, parental community activity, father's educational attainment, and respondent's preference for community size. The results also demonstrate the importance for increasing volunteerism of internal contextual factors including holding a norm of reciprocity, having a volunteer activism attitude, feeling rooted in the community, and believing that helping others will someday be rewarded. Finally, situational factors positively associated with volunteerism are having an automobile, being employed, having a large number of friends, and belonging to numerous organizations. Consequently, the study suggests that motivations, capacities and opportunities each act independently to increase volunteerism among college students. The findings support the idea that a multi-dimensional model of volunteerism is necessary to better understand this unique form of social exchange and, consequently, the process of social integration.

Note: Abstract extracted from PDF file via OCR.

PHD (Doctor of Philosophy)
multi-dimensional model, motivation, volunteerism, internal and external contextual factors

Digitization of this thesis was made possible by a generous grant from the Jefferson Trust, 2015.

Thesis originally deposited on 2016-02-18 in version 1.28 of Libra. This thesis was migrated to Libra2 on 2017-03-23 16:33:08.

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