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Gender Bias in Job Referrals: An Experimental Test

Julie Beugnot () and Emmanuel Peterle ()

MPRA Paper from University Library of Munich, Germany

Abstract: Employee referral programs, while efficient for the employer, have been shown to amplify sex-based occupational segregation in the labour markets. We present evidence from a laboratory experiment designed to shed light on same-gender bias in job referrals within gender-balanced networks. Our data suggest that women tend to favor women in their referral choice, whereas men do not attach much importance to the gender of potential candidates. Our experimental design allows us to disentangle between statistical discrimination, preferences, and pure same-gender bias. Our findings add to the existing literature by highlighting that gendered networks alone do not explain the observed gender homophily in referred-referrer pairs.

Keywords: Same-gender bias; job referral; laboratory experiment (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C91 J16 J21 J71 M51 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018-05
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp, nep-gen and nep-hrm
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Journal Article: Gender bias in job referrals: An experimental test (2020) Downloads
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