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Beyond the Transaction: Every Transaction Has a Story

Ethical Spending and the Importance of Giving

We recently released the MasterCard survey on ethical spending, which was conducted via online interviews with 12,500 consumers from 25 markets across Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa.

The findings from the survey were quite interesting – for example: Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia and China have stepped up to be the region’s most conscientious shoppers, ahead of some of the more developed markets in the region. Consumers in these markets demonstrated a willingness to pay more for items that are environmentally friendly, observe fair trade principles, or where a percentage of the item is donated to a good cause.

Of course, natural disasters did impact our research.  Japan saw a rise in charitable donations, following the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011. Similarly, consumers in Thailand, which experienced severe flooding at the end of 2011, also showed more willingness to donate, with 31% saying they would contribute more this year than last year.

We spoke to one of our CSR partners, UN Women Singapore, about the findings of our survey (please view the video below). Pia Bruce, Executive Director of UN Women Singapore and Office Manager, Mellisa Chong, give some interesting insights into what motivates people to give.  They also discuss the important role played by MasterCard Purchase with Purpose™.

Getting people to take action is always the challenge, wherever you are in the world, but to borrow from one of our interviewees: “Find out the different channels through which you can support these causes—it could be through consumer goods or volunteering—whatever it is, find how you can contribute: through your money, your time or your expertise.”

We’d love to hear from you on how you give back to your local community?  Please share your experiences in the comments below!