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Does the gender mix among employers influence who gets hired? A labor market experiment

Author

Listed:
  • Alexia Gaudeul

    (Friedrich-Schiller-Universität, Jena)

  • Ayu Okvitawanli

    (Friedrich-Schiller-Universität, Jena)

  • Marian Panganiban

    () (Friedrich-Schiller-Universität, Jena, and Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn)

Abstract

We consider in this paper whether the gender mix at the level of decision-makers in firms can influence gender representation at the employee level. We run a laboratory experiment whereby we present a pair of independent employers with applications from two potential employees. We consider whether the gender of the other employer will influence an employer's hiring decision. We find that the gender mix among employers plays a role in the individual hiring decisions of female members. Female employers when paired with a male employer are more likely to choose a female applicant over an equally competent male applicant. Results of an Implicit Association Test (IAT) and answers to a post-experimental questionnaire show that explicit beliefs about relative gender performance are significantly associated with the observed hiring bias, while implicit attitudes do not appear to play a role.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexia Gaudeul & Ayu Okvitawanli & Marian Panganiban, 2015. "Does the gender mix among employers influence who gets hired? A labor market experiment," Jena Economic Research Papers 2015-007, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena.
  • Handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2015-007
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Kenneth R. Ahern & Amy K. Dittmar, 2012. "The Changing of the Boards: The Impact on Firm Valuation of Mandated Female Board Representation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 127(1), pages 137-197.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    discrimination; hiring; IAT; implicit attitudes; gender quotas; labor markets; employment;

    JEL classification:

    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • J78 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Public Policy (including comparable worth)
    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior

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