Aid utility theory: A new way of thinking about and tackling aid utilization neglect

Samantha Kassirer*, Maryam Kouchaki

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In order for the assistance we extend to others to be maximally effective—whether interpersonally or institutionally—we need both givers to extend the help and recipients to utilize the assistance made available to them. Although much organizational behavior research has explored ways to increase prosocial behavior and charitable giving, comparatively little organizational scholarship has explored the recipient's perspective. We believe that organizational behavior scholars, and social scientists more broadly, need to broaden their focus to examining why recipients in need of help sometimes neglect to utilize help. This paper proposes our Aid Utility Theory as a new way of thinking about and tackling aid utilization neglect, while also synthesizing prior social scientific literature that aims to improve aid utilization. We conclude with future directions for organizational behavior scholars who are interested in researching the perspective of those receiving help and improving global aid effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100196
JournalResearch in Organizational Behavior
StatePublished - Feb 2023


  • Aid effectiveness
  • Aid utility
  • Help-acceptance
  • Help-seeking
  • Identity utility
  • Resource utility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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