Searching for a Job is a Beauty Contest

Busetta G., Fiorillo F. and Visalli E. (2013), "Searching for a job is a beauty contest", Munich Personal RePEc Archive, Paper No. 49825, posted 15. September 2013 17:32 UTC

13 Pages Posted: 28 Sep 2013

See all articles by Giovanni Busetta

Giovanni Busetta

University of Messina - Department of Economics, Business, Environmental Sciences and Quantitative Methods

Fabio Fiorillo

Polytechnic University of Marche - Faculty of Economics

Emanuela Visalli

University of Messina

Date Written: September 27, 2013

Abstract

The paper deals with the impact of beauty on employability of people, stressing the first stage of the hiring process. In particular, we studied if there exists a preference for attractive candidates and if it does whether it depends on sex, physical features and racial characteristics.

We monitored all relevant agencies offering jobs in Italy from August 2011 to September 2012 sending 11008 CVs to 1542 advertised job openings. To do so, we construct fake CVs and we sent the same CV 8 times, changing only name and surname, address, and the photo included. In particular, we sent 4 CVs with photo of an attractive and unattractive man and women, and 4 CVs without photo of an Italian and a foreign men and women to each job opening.

Callbacks rates are statistically significant higher for attractive women and men than unattractive ones. Racial discrimination appears to be statistically relevant, but less than discrimination based on the physical features, especially for women.

Keywords: beauty premium, racial discrimination, experimental economics

JEL Classification: C93, J71, J78

Suggested Citation

Busetta, Giovanni and Fiorillo, Fabio and Visalli, Emanuela, Searching for a Job is a Beauty Contest (September 27, 2013). Busetta G., Fiorillo F. and Visalli E. (2013), "Searching for a job is a beauty contest", Munich Personal RePEc Archive, Paper No. 49825, posted 15. September 2013 17:32 UTC, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2331921 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2331921

Giovanni Busetta (Contact Author)

University of Messina - Department of Economics, Business, Environmental Sciences and Quantitative Methods ( email )

Via T. Cannizzaro 278
Messina, 98122
Italy

Fabio Fiorillo

Polytechnic University of Marche - Faculty of Economics ( email )

Piazzale Martelli, 8
60121 Ancona
Italy

Emanuela Visalli

University of Messina ( email )

Italy

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