A new GLO Discussion Paper indicates that introducing a hypothetical wage penalty for discriminatory choice behavior lowers discrimination and that higher penalties have a greater effect.
GLO Discussion Paper No. 856, 2021
Loss aversion in taste-based employee discrimination: Evidence from a choice experiment – Download PDF
by Lippens, Louis & Baert, Stijn & Derous, Eva
GLO Fellow Stijn Baert
Author Abstract: Using a choice experiment, we test whether taste-based employee discrimination against ethnic minorities is susceptible to loss aversion. In line with empirical evidence from previous research, our results indicate that introducing a hypothetical wage penalty for discriminatory choice behaviour lowers discrimination and that higher penalties have a greater effect. Most notably, we find that the propensity to discriminate is significantly lower when this penalty is loss-framed rather than gain-framed. From a policy perspective, it could therefore be more effective to financially penalise taste-based discriminators than to incentivise them not to discriminate.
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