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Gender Discrimination in Job Ads: Theory and Evidence

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  • Peter Kuhn

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  • Kailing Shen

Abstract

We study firms’ advertised gender preferences in a population of ads on a Chinese internet job board, and interpret these patterns using a simple employer search model. The model allows us to distinguish firms’ underlying gender preferences from firms’ propensities to restrict their search to their preferred gender. The model also predicts that higher job skill requirements should reduce the tendency to gender-target a job ad; this is strongly confirmed in our data. We also find that firms’ underlying gender preferences are highly job-specific, with many firms requesting men for some jobs and women for others, and with one third of the variation in gender preferences within firm occupation cells. [IZA DP No. 5195]

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by eSocialSciences in its series Working Papers with number id:2915.

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Date of creation: Sep 2010
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Handle: RePEc:ess:wpaper:id:2915

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Keywords: discrimination; gender; China; internet; search;

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References

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  1. William A. Darity & Patrick L. Mason, 1998. "Evidence on Discrimination in Employment: Codes of Color, Codes of Gender," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 63-90, Spring.
  2. Black, Sandra & Brainerd, Elizabeth, 2002. "Importing Equality? The Impact of Globalization on Gender Discrimination," CEPR Discussion Papers 3532, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  3. Peter Kuhn & Kailing Shen, 2009. "Employers’ Preferences for Gender, Age, Height and Beauty: Direct Evidence," NBER Working Papers 15564, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  4. Guido Menzio, 2007. "A Theory of Partially Directed Search," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115(5), pages 748-769, October.
  5. Coen N. Teulings & Pieter A. Gautier, 2000. "The Right Man for the Job," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 00-038/3, Tinbergen Institute.
  6. Ours, J.C. van & Ridder, G., 1993. "Vacancy Durations: Search or Selection?," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-142177, Tilburg University.
  7. Anne Case & Christina Paxson, 2006. "Stature and status: Height, ability, and labor market outcomes," Working Papers 232, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
  8. Barron, John M & Bishop, John, 1985. "Extensive Search, Intensive Search, and Hiring Costs: New Evidence on Employer Hiring Activity," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 23(3), pages 363-82, July.
  9. Rosen, Asa, 1997. "An equilibrium search-matching model of discrimination," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 41(8), pages 1589-1613, August.
  10. Ours, J.C. van & Ridder, G., 1992. "Vacancies and recruitment of new employees," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-142178, Tilburg University.
  11. Kerwin Kofi Charles & Jonathan Guryan, 2008. "Prejudice and Wages: An Empirical Assessment of Becker's The Economics of Discrimination," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 116(5), pages 773-809, October.
  12. Marianne Bertrand & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2003. "Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination," NBER Working Papers 9873, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  13. Moen, E.R., 1995. "Competitive Search Equilibrium," Memorandum 37/1995, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  14. van Ours, J C & Ridder, G, 1993. "Vacancy Durations: Search or Selection?," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 55(2), pages 187-98, May.
  15. Daniel S. Hamermesh & Jeff E. Biddle, 1993. "Beauty and the Labor Market," NBER Working Papers 4518, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  16. Goldin, Claudia, 1992. "Understanding the Gender Gap: An Economic History of American Women," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195072709.
  17. van Ours, Jan & Ridder, Geert, 1992. "Vacancies and the Recruitment of New Employees," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 10(2), pages 138-55, April.
  18. Barron, John M & Bishop, John & Dunkelberg, William C, 1985. "Employer Search: The Interviewing and Hiring of New Employees," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 67(1), pages 43-52, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Shing-Yi Wang, 2011. "Marriage Networks, Nepotism and Labor Market Outcomes in China," Working Papers id:4287, eSocialSciences.
  2. Zhou, Xiangyi & Zhang, Jie & Song, Xuetao, 2013. "Gender Discrimination in Hiring: Evidence from 19,130 Resumes in China," MPRA Paper 43543, University Library of Munich, Germany.

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