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Jen Shang

Data from the Giving USA Foundation show that individuals gave about $9.66 billion to charity in 2015. This is only about 2 percent of United States gross domestic product. It has not grown for 50 years since the records at Giving USA began. This chapter asks how a better understanding of identity relevance can be used to drive up and sustain charitable giving, without detracting from how good people feel about their support. The author does so by proposing a six-element self that includes the I/me-self, the meta-self, the not-I/me-self and the united self. The author explores how they shape donors’ sense of who they are, how they motivate giving, how giving can shape the adaptation and development of donors’ sense of self, and how together they can increase psychological well-being.