Employers’ Preferences for Gender, Age, Height and Beauty: Direct Evidence
AbstractWe study firms’ advertised preferences for gender, age, height and beauty in a sample of ads from a Chinese internet job board, and interpret these patterns using a simple employer search model. We find that these characteristics are widely and highly valued by Chinese employers, though employers’ valuations are highly specific to detailed jobs and occupations. Consistent with our model, advertised preferences for gender, age, height and beauty all become less prevalent as job skill requirements rise. Cross-sectional patterns suggest some role for customer discrimination, product market competition, and corporate culture. Using the recent collapse of China’s labor market as a natural experiment, we find that firms’ advertised education and experience requirements respond to changing labor market conditions in the direction predicted by our model, while firms’ advertised preferences for age, gender, height and beauty do not.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 15564.
Date of creation: Dec 2009
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Find related papers by JEL classification:
- J6 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, and Vacancies
- J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2009-12-19 (All new papers)
- NEP-BEC-2009-12-19 (Business Economics)
- NEP-CNA-2009-12-19 (China)
- NEP-LAB-2009-12-19 (Labour Economics)
- NEP-TRA-2009-12-19 (Transition Economics)
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- Peter J. Kuhn & Kailing Shen, 2011.
"Gender Discrimination in Job Ads: Theory and Evidence,"
NBER Working Papers
17453, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Peter Kuhn & Kailing Shen, 2010. "Gender Discrimination in Job Ads: Theory and Evidence," Working Papers id:2915, eSocialSciences.
- Kuhn, Peter J. & Shen, Kailing, 2010. "Gender Discrimination in Job Ads: Theory and Evidence," IZA Discussion Papers 5195, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
- Shing-Yi Wang, 2010. "Statistical Discrimination, Productivity and the Height of Immigrants," Working Papers id:3344, eSocialSciences.
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