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Feb 16, 2019 19:35:47

Money is the Most Important Tool

by @itsabhinaya PATRON | 312 words | 🐣 | 194💌

Abhinaya Konduru

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I am reading the 6-part series on HBR, The Poor and Unhappy. My thoughts on the first part here and the second part here.

The third part is about how money makes us "less kind, less helpful, and less generous with each other."

I dug more into the research that came to the above conclusion.

No match for money: Even in intimate relationships and collectivistic cultures, reminders of money weaken sociomoral responses

This is one of the experiments that they did that stuck out to me. Keep in mind that the study was done in India and in India helping is seen as a "moral obligation and not a personal choice".

Does money play a role when helping others?

Participants on the study were given three low need scenarios, three medium need scenarios, and three high need scenarios as a questionnaire with a scale.

Examples of the questions:

Low need: "Sonia did not give someone a ride to the sightseeing bus stop because she felt that fiving the ride might be boring." 

Medium Need: "Manoj did not give pain-relief medication to someone suffering from a painful migraine headache on a bus ride because he did not want to bother looking for the bottle in his bag."

High Need: "Ashvini not donating blood to someone who required it during emergency surgery because she had plans to go to a movie and did not want to get tired."

What they found was that the "money cues reduced people's moral responsibility to help" in low need situations. For high need situations, money was not a significant factor.

It's not surprising to see people have a high moral responsibility to help in life-threatening situations but I am still surprised by how money is engraved in our brains even when it comes to helping. 

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