Age and motives for volunteering: Further evidence


  • María Celeste Dávila
  • Juan Francisco Díaz-Morales


This work has explored the socioemotional selectivity theory (Cartensen, 1995) with the purpose of evaluating how people selectively optimize their activities involving social investments as they increase in age, investing more in self-relevant and emotionally meaningful goals. Specifically, the purpose of this study was to test hypotheses derived from the socioemotional selectivity theory regarding the effects of age on motives for volunteering. The Volunteer Functions Inventory (Clary et al., 1998) was completed by 214 volunteers affiliated with different organizations. Results indicated that, as age increases, career, understanding and making friends volunteer motivations decrease, while social and values volunteer motivations increase. Possible implications for volunteer management in organizations are analyzed.