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Can age discrimination be justified with a lower productivity of older workers?


  • Barthel, Jens


The connection between age and productivity is a widely discussed topic in the empirical literature. The present paper's aim is to contribute to the explanation of an apparant lower productivity of older individuals. If we introduce uncertainty about the future working conditions depending on present success, a decrease of productivity over the working life can be observed despite a constant a priori productivity.

Suggested Citation

  • Barthel, Jens, 2008. "Can age discrimination be justified with a lower productivity of older workers?," MPRA Paper 14682, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:14682

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Bruce A. Weinberg & David W. Galenson, 2005. "Creative Careers: The Life Cycles of Nobel Laureates in Economics," NBER Working Papers 11799, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Levin, Sharon G & Stephan, Paula E, 1991. "Research Productivity over the Life Cycle: Evidence for Academic Scientists," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(1), pages 114-132, March.
    3. Tetsuo Ono & Yasuo Maeda, 2001. "Is Aging Harmful to the Environment?," Environmental & Resource Economics, Springer;European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 20(2), pages 113-127, October.
    4. Sveinbjörn Blöndal & Stefano Scarpetta, 1999. "The Retirement Decision in OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 202, OECD Publishing.
    5. Bernt Bratsberg & James F. Ragan Jr. & John T. Warren, 2003. "Negative Returns to Seniority: New Evidence in Academic Markets," ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 56(2), pages 306-323, January.
    6. Phelps, Edmund S, 1972. "The Statistical Theory of Racism and Sexism," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 62(4), pages 659-661, September.
    7. Börsch-Supan, Axel & Düzgün, Ismail & Weiss, Matthias, 2005. "Altern und Produktivität: Zum Stand der Forschung," MEA discussion paper series 05073, Munich Center for the Economics of Aging (MEA) at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy.
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    More about this item


    age discrimination; productivity;

    JEL classification:

    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing

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