Endophilia or Exophobia: Beyond Discrimination

Jan Feld, Nicolas Salamanca, Daniel Hamermesh

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The discrimination literature treats outcomes as relative. But does a differential arise because agents discriminate against others—exophobia—or because they favour their own kind—endophilia? Using a field experiment that assigned graders randomly to students' exams that did/ did not contain names, we find favouritism but no discrimination by nationality, but neither by gender. We are able to identify these preferences under a wide range of behavioural scenarios regarding the graders. That endophilia dominates exophobia alters how we should measure discriminatory wage differentials and should inform the formulation of anti-discrimination policy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1503–1527
Number of pages25
JournalThe Economic Journal
Issue number594
Early online date22 Feb 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016


  • favouritism, discrimination, field experiment, economics of education

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