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Better sexy than flexy? A lab experiment assessing the impact of perceived attractiveness and personality traits on hiring decisions


  • S. BAERT




In this letter we present a laboratory experiment to assess the relative and independent effect of perceived attractiveness and personality traits on hiring decisions. Our results indicate that attractiveness and conscientiousness, followed by emotional stability, are important drivers of recruiters’ decisions.

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  • S. Baert & L. Decuypere, 2013. "Better sexy than flexy? A lab experiment assessing the impact of perceived attractiveness and personality traits on hiring decisions," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 13/868, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  • Handle: RePEc:rug:rugwps:13/868

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Chang, Hung-Hao & Weng, Yungho, 2012. "What is more important for prostitute price? Physical appearance or risky sex behavior?," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 117(2), pages 480-483.
    2. Christian Pfeifer, 2012. "Physical attractiveness, employment and earnings," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 19(6), pages 505-510, April.
    3. Hamermesh, Daniel S & Biddle, Jeff E, 1994. "Beauty and the Labor Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 84(5), pages 1174-1194, December.
    4. Uysal, Selver Derya & Pohlmeier, Winfried, 2011. "Unemployment duration and personality," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 980-992.
    5. 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.
    6. Philip K. Robins & Jenny F. Homer & Michael T. French, 2011. "Beauty and the Labor Market: Accounting for the Additional Effects of Personality and Grooming," LABOUR, CEIS, vol. 25(2), pages 228-251, June.
    7. Armin Falk & Stephan Meier & Christian Zehnder, 2013. "Do Lab Experiments Misrepresent Social Preferences? The Case Of Self-Selected Student Samples," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11(4), pages 839-852, August.
    8. Samuel Cameron & Alan Collins, 1999. "Looks unimportant? A demand function for male attractiveness by female personal advertisers," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 6(6), pages 381-384.
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    Cited by:

    1. Baert, Stijn, 2015. "Do They Find You on Facebook? Facebook Profile Picture and Hiring Chances," IZA Discussion Papers 9584, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Peter Hoeschler & Uschi Backes-Gellner, 2017. "The Relative Importance of Personal Characteristics for the Hiring of Young Workers," Economics of Education Working Paper Series 0142, University of Zurich, Department of Business Administration (IBW), revised Jan 2018.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing

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