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  • What would make a present more memorable?
  • What would make a present more memorable?
    Clem Onojeghuo (2016) ©

For me? The science of sentimental gifting

A GameStop voucher may seem like an ideal gift for a gamer, but it’s not necessarily what they’d want to receive. Canvas8 spoke to Julian Givi, a doctoral candidate at Carnegie Mellon University, to learn why a fear of missing the mark means people shy away from giving something more meaningful.

Location Global

“From a standard economics perspective, gifts are a waste of money,” writes behavioural economist Dan Ariely, reflecting on the mismatch between what people want and what they actually get. “The point is that while gifts are financially inefficient, they're an important social lubricant. They help us make friends and create long-term relationships that can sustain us through the ups and downs of life.”

Despite their value in building interpersonal connections, numerous data points indicate that Americans aren’t the most sentimental gift-givers. Although 50% agree that it's the thought that matters most when receiving a gift, ...



  • People prefer to receive sentimental presents

    People prefer to receive sentimental presents

    For fear of buying the wrong thing, gift-givers often opt for superficial presents for their loved ones. But research from Carnegie Mellon University suggests that people actually much prefer sentimental gifts like photographs, because the personal touch seems to mean more. 

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    Who do Americans typically buy presents for?

    For many Americans, gift-giving is an integral part of showing love for family, friends and even pets. But why are some groups prioritised when picking out presents? Canvas8 spoke to 20 men and women from across the US to find out what they think about gift-giving and who they can’t help but spoil.

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    What’s the future of the gift card?

    In the UK, the gift card and voucher industry is estimated to be worth £5.6 billion a year, and in 2015, sales of gift cards in the US hit $130 billion. But with mobile tech transforming the way we browse and shop, how is the traditional model adapting? And how will people give in the future?

  • The Care Box Co. makes giving gifts easier

    The Care Box Co. makes giving gifts easier

    Gifts feel good to give and great to receive – but people don't always get it right. The Care Box Co. is making this process easier with customised care boxes based around moods and needs rather than occasions. It's built on the belief that every moment – large or small – is best marked with a gift.