Knight Blog

The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

First ever detailed study of mobile giving will focus on Haiti

Jan. 21, 2011, 12:13 p.m., Posted by Knight Foundation

The Red Cross raised a total of $476 million following the February 2010 earthquake in Haiti, and over $41 million of that came from the Text HAITI mobile campaign.

Earlier this week, we announced a grant that will support the first ever detailed study of mobile giving. The Berkman Center hopes to discover whether these mobile donors are different from general donors, and will analyze the spread of the campaign within social media.

The center, which engages in active research on a wide array of Net issues, is partnering with the mGive Foundation and the Pew Research Center's Internet and American Life Project.

Ultimately, findings from this research will inform the work of philanthropic organizations that use social media tools, leading to better campaign design and more effective engagement with potential donors.

Beyond that, the Berkman Center hopes this work will shed some light on the dynamics of digital activism, showing the movement of participants from symbolic expressions of support to making a financial contribution to the cause.