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Topics in Labor and Experimental Economics

Landsman, Rachel (2019) Topics in Labor and Experimental Economics. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This dissertation consists of three essays on labor and experimental economics. The first two chapters address gender differences in labor markets. The third chapter is a methodological contribution to experimental economics. Chapter 1 presents work from an experimental study on gender differences in returns to negotiation. The study presents a first examination of a negotiation-ban counterfactual. The study looks at manager-selected compensation when workers can and cannot negotiate their salary in an environment where workers perform either high or low productivity tasks. We find that when negotiation is allowed, a gender earnings gap emerges among high productivity workers. A similar gender earnings gap is not present when negotiation is not permitted. Chapter 2 presents work from a study on gender differences in executive departure rates. The study asks whether the higher departure rates of female executives relative to male executives can be explained by differences in ability or if other factors are also contributing to the departure rate gap. Using exogenous changes in firm performance coming from industry wide fluctuations, the study demonstrates that the departure rate gap cannot be explained by ability alone. The study provides evidence that, instead, the gap is consistent with attribution bias. Chapter 3 presents work from a study that tests whether the slider task is responsive to incentives. Using a between-subject design with three different piece rates: half a cent, two cents, and 8 cents, we find that the performance response in the slider task is very inelastic to incentives. Following a 1500% increase in incentives, output only increased by 5%. This study cautions researchers that the slider task may be underpowered in between-subject experiments that use typical experimental sample sizes.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Landsman, Rachelrbl10@pitt.edurbl10
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairVesterlund,
Committee MemberGihleb,
Committee MemberHuffman,
Committee MemberSera,
Date: 20 June 2019
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 26 June 2018
Approval Date: 20 June 2019
Submission Date: 3 April 2019
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 95
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Economics
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: gender, negotiation, corporate governance
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2019 16:05
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2019 16:05


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