Diskriminering også i delingsøkonomien

Ein stor og god litteratur har tidlegare dokumentert diskriminering basert på etnisitet i arbeidsmarknaden, leigemarknaden og andre marknader, også i Noreg. Det er kanskje ikkje så overraskande, men diskriminering er også ein del av delingsøkonomien. Eit nytt arbeidsnotat frå forskarar ved Harvard finn at gjestar med «afro-amerikanske» namn har 16% mindre sjanse til å bli aksepterte enn gjestar med «kvite» namn. Dette er kostbart for utleigar, som i 1/3 av tilfella ikkje får erstatta den potensielle gjesten.

Online marketplaces increasingly choose to reduce the anonymity of buyers and sellers in order to facilitate trust. We demonstrate that this common market design choice results in an important unintended consequence: racial discrimination. In a field experiment on Airbnb, we find that requests from guests with distinctively African-American names are roughly 16% less likely to be accepted than identical guests with distinctively White names. The difference persists whether the host is African-American or White, male or female. The difference also persists whether the host shares the property with the guest or not, and whether the property is cheap or expensive. We validate our findings through observational data on hosts’ recent experiences with African-American guests, finding host behavior consistent with some, though not all, hosts discriminating. Finally, we find that discrimination is costly for hosts who indulge in it: hosts who reject African- American guests are able to find a replacement guest only 35% of the time. On the whole, our analysis suggests a need for caution: while information can facilitate transactions, it also facilitates discrimination.

Edelman, Benjamin G., Michael Luca, and Dan Svirsky. 2016. “Racial Discrimination in the Sharing Economy: Evidence from a Field Experiment.” Harvard Business School NOM Unit Working Paper 16-069. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School. http://papers.ssrn.com/abstract=2712393.
(via Kevin Lewis)

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