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What Data Sets Can Tell Us about Volunteering

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With the advent of more and larger data sets, research on volunteering is transitioning from pontificating to proving hypothesis about volunteering characteristics. The RGK Center for Philanthropy and Community Service at the University of Texas publishes the Investigator, a series of information briefs designed to bridge the gap between practitioners and researchers in volunteerism, and to encourage researchers to do more in the field of volunteerism.

The first issue,“Data Sets on Volunteerism: A Research Primer,” previewed in e-Volunteerism before being made available to the public, summarized existing data sets and provided examples of the analyses that can be generated from them. One of the data sets described was the Current Population Survey Supplements. The second issue of the Investigator, “Volunteering by States,” uses this data set to report volunteering rates and characteristics of volunteers by each State in the United States.

e-Volunteerism unveils the second issue of the Investigator (giving readers the chance to provide feedback prior to the public presentation) with comments explaining the process. Learn more about the characteristics of volunteers on a state-by-state basis in the US, and how to use such studies to assist your volunteer program. Non-American readers will find the concepts useful as well and have the opportunity to identify similar studies in their countries.