Skill Uncertainty and Social Inference
Research in psychology indicates that individuals often make inferences regarding unknown individual qualities based on potentially irrelevant (but socially observable) information. This paper explores occupational choices when individuals receive imprecise signals regarding ability and use the observable characteristics of previously successful individuals to infer own ability. Individuals who fail to observe successful predecessors of their same type may underestimate their potential for success in the occupation. We discuss the role of these biases in light of the literature on affirmative action and firm incentives.
|Date of creation:||Jan 2007|
|Date of revision:|
|Publication status:||published in: Labour Economics, 2008, 15 (3), 422-427|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: IZA, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany|
Phone: +49 228 3894 223
Fax: +49 228 3894 180
Web page: http://www.iza.org
|Order Information:|| Postal: IZA, Margard Ody, P.O. Box 7240, D-53072 Bonn, Germany|
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Matthew Rabin, 1998.
"Psychology and Economics,"
Journal of Economic Literature,
American Economic Association, vol. 36(1), pages 11-46, March.
- Rabin, Matthew, 1997. "Psychology and Economics," Department of Economics, Working Paper Series qt8jd5z5j2, Department of Economics, Institute for Business and Economic Research, UC Berkeley.
- Matthew Rabin., 1997. "Psychology and Economics," Economics Working Papers 97-251, University of California at Berkeley.
- Christopher Avery & Susan Athey & Peter Zemsky, 2000.
"Mentoring and Diversity,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 90(4), pages 765-786, September.
- Harry Holzer & David Neumark, 1999.
"Assessing Affirmative Action,"
NBER Working Papers
7323, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Phelps, Edmund S, 1972. "The Statistical Theory of Racism and Sexism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(4), pages 659-61, September.
- Lundberg, Shelly J & Startz, Richard, 1983.
"Private Discrimination and Social Intervention in Competitive Labor Markets,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 73(3), pages 340-47, June.
- Richard Startz & Lundberg, . "Private Discrimination and Social Intervention in Competitive Labor Markets," Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research Working Papers 19-81, Wharton School Rodney L. White Center for Financial Research.
- Coate, Stephen & Loury, Glenn C, 1993.
"Will Affirmative-Action Policies Eliminate Negative Stereotypes?,"
American Economic Review,
American Economic Association, vol. 83(5), pages 1220-40, December.
- Coate, S. & Loury, G.C., 1992. "Will Affirmative Action Policies Eliminate Negative Stereotypes?," Papers 3, Boston University - Department of Economics.
- Manski, Charles F., 1993. "Dynamic choice in social settings : Learning from the experiences of others," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 121-136, July.
- Oxoby, Robert J., 2008.
"Skill uncertainty and social inference,"
Elsevier, vol. 15(3), pages 400-405, June.
- Michael R. Pergamit & Jonathan R. Veum, 1999. "What is a promotion?," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 52(4), pages 581-601, July.
- Manski, C.F., 1990. "Dynamic Choice In A Social Setting," Working papers 9003, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
- Oxoby, Robert J., 2002. "Status characteristics, cognitive bias, and incentives in teams," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 301-316.
- Kim-Sau Chung, 2000. "Role Models and Arguments for Affirmative Action," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 90(3), pages 640-648, June.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2567. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Mark Fallak)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.