Genetic Diversity and Performance: Evidence from Fooball Data

69 Pages Posted: 20 Jul 2021

See all articles by Michel A. R. Beine

Michel A. R. Beine

University of Luxemburg; CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Silvia Peracchi

Universite du Luxembourg

Skerdilajda Zanaj

Universite du Luxembourg

Date Written: 2021

Abstract

The theoretical impact of genetic diversity is ambiguous since it leads to costs and benefits at the collective level. In this paper, we assess empirically the connection between genetic diversity and the performance of sport teams. Focusing on football (soccer), we built a novel dataset of national teams of European countries that have participated in the European and the World Championships since 1970. Determining the genetic diversity of national teams is based on the distance between the genetic scores of every players’ origins in the team. Genetic endowments for each player are recovered using a matching algorithm based on family names. Performance is measured at both the unilateral and bilateral level. Identification of the causal link relies on an instrumental variable strategy that is based on past immigration at the country level about one generation before. Our findings indicate a positive causal link between genetic diversity and teams’ performance. We find a substantial effect, a one-standard increase in diversity leading to ranking changes of two to three positions after each stage of a championship.

JEL Classification: F220, F660, O150, O470, Z220

Suggested Citation

Beine, Michel A. R. and Peracchi, Silvia and Zanaj, Skerdilajda, Genetic Diversity and Performance: Evidence from Fooball Data (2021). CESifo Working Paper No. 9188, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3887252 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3887252

Michel A. R. Beine (Contact Author)

University of Luxemburg ( email )

L-1511 Luxembourg
Luxembourg

CESifo (Center for Economic Studies and Ifo Institute)

Poschinger Str. 5
Munich, DE-81679
Germany

Silvia Peracchi

Universite du Luxembourg ( email )

L-1511 Luxembourg
Luxembourg

Skerdilajda Zanaj

Universite du Luxembourg ( email )

L-1511 Luxembourg
Luxembourg

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
37
Abstract Views
186
PlumX Metrics