Research seminar "Age Discrimination in Hiring: an Experimental Study"
Speaker: Ekaterina Klepikova (HSE Faculty of Economic Sciences).
Laboratory for Labour Market Studies and Centre for Labour Market Studies held the Research Seminar on September 18, 2018.
Speaker: Ekaterina Klepikova, doctoral student at the HSE Faculty of Economic Sciences .
Theme: Age Discrimination in Hiring: an Experimental Study.
This article presents the findings of the first field experiment – a resume correspondence study – on age discrimination in the Russian labour market. Correspondence studies are nowadays viewed as the most objective way to test for hiring discrimination. This method consists of sending pairs of curricula for job offers, very similar in everything except the trait to be analyzed (age in our case). Data collection for the presented study was conducted in February-March 2018. Pairs of matched applications, one from a fictitious 29-year-old female applicant and one from a fictitious 48-year-old female applicant, were sent to 341 employers with job openings for accountants in Moscow posted on the one of the most popular job search website. It turned out that the probability of receiving an invitation for an interview for an older candidate is 24-32%, whereas for a younger candidate 45-52%. Thus, the positive callback ratio is 1.8-2.5. The indicator of “net discrimination” calculated as the difference in the shares of positive callbacks from the number of vacancies for which at least one response is received, for the younger and older candidates is 37-49%. Comparing with the results of the existing studies, it turns out that the obtained discrimination level is quite high. Taking into account the population aging, a reduction in the workforce and the inevitable prospect of an increase in the retirement age, measures must be taken to combat age discrimination and allow older people to work on an equal basis with young people.
Discussant: Alexis Belianin, head оf HSE International Laboratory for Experimental and Behavioural Economics