Will Ugly Betty Ever Find a Job in Italy?
QUADERNO DI RICERCA n. 391, 2013
23 Pages Posted: 8 Oct 2013
Date Written: October 6, 2013
This paper evaluates the impact of beauty on employability, stressing the first stage of the hiring process. In particular, we studied the Italian labor market in order to ascertain whether there exists a preference for attractive applicants according to gender and racial characteristics. The sample analyzed consists of observations collected by sending 11008 curricula vitae (henceforth CVs) to firms looking for workers in response to advertised job postings.
Positive responses were obtained by 3278 CVs (almost 30% of the sample). We then compared response rates of different categories, obtaining the following results: those who receive the highest levels of positive responses are attractive subjects; most of the responses to plain subjects involve unqualified jobs; beauty appears to be essential for front clerical work; racial discrimination appears to be significant, but less so than discrimination based on physical features, especially for women.
Keywords: beauty premium, racial discrimination, experimental economics
JEL Classification: C93, J71, J78
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation