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Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Height Discrimination in Employment

https://ideas.repec.org/p/ces/ceswps/_2733.html

"Taller workers earn on average higher salaries. Recent research has proposed cognitive abilities and social skills as explanations for the height-wage premium. Another possible mechanism, employer discrimination, has found little support. In this paper, we provide some evidence in favor of the discrimination hypothesis. Using a cross section of 13 countries, we show that there is a consistent height-wage premium across Europe and that it is largely due to occupational sorting. We show that height has a significant effect for the occupational sorting of employed workers but not for the self-employed. We interpret this result as evidence of employer discrimination in favor of taller workers. Our results are consistent with the theoretical predictions of recent models on statistical discrimination and employer learning."

I've seen a few people claim tall workers earn more due to superior intellect, confidence, or ambition. Clearly, that makes no sense because self-employed short people are not affected by the wage gap. Trying to link positive traits to height is like doing the same for skin color. It's stupid.

More on height discrimination in business: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Height_discrimination#In_business

1 comment:

  1. "Taller workers earn on average higher salaries.
    We show that height has a significant effect for the occupational sorting of employed workers but not for the self-employed. We interpret this result as evidence of employer discrimination in favor of taller workers.

    If those who think the tall are so much more gifted than the rest of us, then why isn't this evident in college? Those on the taller side would have the higher test scores and higher class grade scores than those below 6'. But this is not true. And the reason, the scan-tron or TA does not see the person completing the assigned work, but only the final result.

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