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Is Beauty only Skin-deep? Disentangling the Beauty Premium on a Game Show

  • Michele Belot,

    ()

  • V. Bhaskar

    ()

  • Jeroen van de Ven

    ()

This paper analyzes behavior on a TV game show where players' monetary payoffs depend upon an array of factors, including ability in answering questions, perceived cooperativeness and the willingness of other players to choose them. We find a substantial beauty premium and are able to disentangle contributing factors. Attractive players perform no differently than less attractive ones, on every dimension. They also exhibit and engender the same degree of cooperativeness. Nevertheless, attractive players are substantially less likely to be eliminated by their peers. Our results suggest a consumption value basis for the beauty premium.

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File URL: http://www.essex.ac.uk/economics/discussion-papers/papers-text/dp624.pdf
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Paper provided by University of Essex, Department of Economics in its series Economics Discussion Papers with number 624.

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Date of creation: 11 Jan 2007
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Handle: RePEc:esx:essedp:624
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  1. Andreoni, James & Petrie, Ragan, 2008. "Beauty, gender and stereotypes: Evidence from laboratory experiments," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 73-93, February.
  2. John A. List, 2006. "Friend or Foe? A Natural Experiment of the Prisoner's Dilemma," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 88(3), pages 463-471, August.
  3. Nicola Persico & Andrew Postlewaite & Dan Silverman, 2004. "The Effect of Adolescent Experience on Labor Market Outcomes: The Case of Height," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 112(5), pages 1019-1053, October.
  4. Craig E. Landry & Andreas Lange & John A. List & Michael K. Price & Nicholas G. Rupp, 2006. "Toward an Understanding of the Economics of Charity: Evidence from a Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 121(2), pages 747-782, May.
  5. Glenn W. Harrison & John A. List, 2004. "Field Experiments," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 42(4), pages 1009-1055, December.
  6. Naci Mocan & Erdal Tekin, 2010. "Ugly Criminals," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 92(1), pages 15-30, February.
  7. Jeff E. Biddle & Daniel S. Hamermesh, 1995. "Beauty, Productivity and Discrimination: Lawyers' Looks and Lucre," NBER Working Papers 5366, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Levitt, Steven D, 2004. "Testing Theories of Discrimination: Evidence from Weakest Link," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 47(2), pages 431-52, October.
  9. John List, 2004. "Young, selfish, and male: Field evidence of social preferences," Natural Field Experiments 00298, The Field Experiments Website.
  10. Michele Belot, & V. Bhaskar & Jeroen van de Ven, 2006. "A Public Dilemma: Cooperation with Large Stakes and a Large Audience," Economics Discussion Papers 617, University of Essex, Department of Economics.
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