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Beauty Queens and Battling Knights: Risk Taking and Attractiveness in Chess

  • Dreber Almenberg, Anna

    ()

    (Institute for Financial Research (SIFR))

  • Gerdes, Christer

    ()

    (SOFI, Stockholm University)

  • Gränsmark, Patrik

    ()

    (SOFI, Stockholm University)

We explore the relationship between attractiveness and risk taking in chess. We use a large international panel dataset on chess competitions which includes a control for the players' skill in chess. This data is combined with results from a survey on an online labor market where participants were asked to rate the photos of 626 expert chess players according to attractiveness. Our results suggest that male chess players choose significantly riskier strategies when playing against an attractive female opponent, even though this does not improve their performance. Women's strategies are not affected by the attractiveness of the opponent.

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Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5314.

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Length: 38 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2010
Date of revision:
Publication status: published in: Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 2013, 90, 1-18
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5314
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  2. Catherine C. Eckel & Philip J. Grossman, 2008. "Sex and Risk: Experimental Evidence," Monash Economics Working Papers archive-09, Monash University, Department of Economics.
  3. Mobius, Markus & Rosenblat, Tanya, 2006. "Why Beauty Matters," Scholarly Articles 3043406, Harvard University Department of Economics.
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  6. Gerdes, Christer & Gränsmark, Patrik & Rosholm, Michael, 2011. "Chicken or Checkin'? Rational Learning in Repeated Chess Games," IZA Discussion Papers 5862, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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  8. Horton, John J. & Rand, David G. & Zeckhauser, Richard, 2010. "The Online Laboratory: Conducting Experiments in a Real Labor Market," Working Paper Series rwp10-017, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
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  10. Bertrand, Marianne & Karlan, Dean & Mullainathan, Sendhil & Shafir, Eldar & Zinman, Jonathan, 2009. "What's Advertising Content Worth? Evidence from a Consumer Credit Marketing Field Experiment," Working Papers 58, Yale University, Department of Economics.
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  12. 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.
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  15. Eckel, Catherine C. & Wilson, Rick K., 2004. "Is trust a risky decision?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 55(4), pages 447-465, December.
  16. Andreoni,J. & Petrie,R., 2004. "Beauty, gender and stereotypes : evidence from laboratory experiments," Working papers 6, Wisconsin Madison - Social Systems.
  17. Muriel Niederle & Lise Vesterlund, 2007. "Do Women Shy Away From Competition? Do Men Compete Too Much?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 1067-1101.
  18. Berggren, Niclas & Jordahl, Henrik & Poutvaara, Panu, 2010. "The looks of a winner: Beauty and electoral success," Munich Reprints in Economics 20267, University of Munich, Department of Economics.
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