"…experimental research on charity tends to support the notion that donating and thinking occupy separate realms. A study at the University of Pennsylvania asked participants which charity they’d rather give to: One that achieved its goals by spending 20% of its money on advertising, OR one that required more money to accomplish the same goals, but spent less on promotion. Though the first charity was more efficient, the study found that most favored the latter: [the perception of] seeing their money at work mattered more than the amount of good it did."
— Fascinating review of studies on why we give to charity, one of psychology’s most enduring mysteries. Related, the story of George Price and his quest for the origins of altruism. (via)