Self-identified obese people request less money: a field experiment

Proestakis, Antonis and Branas-Garza, Pablo (2016) Self-identified obese people request less money: a field experiment. Frontiers in Psychology, 7 . ISSN 1664-1078

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Abstract

Empirical evidence suggests that obese people are discriminated in different social environments such as the work place. Yet, the degree to which obese people are internalizing and adjusting their own behaviour as a result of this discriminatory behaviour has not been studied thoroughly. We develop a proxy for measuring experimentally the "self-weight bias" by giving to both self-identified obese (n=90) and non-obese (n=180) individuals the opportunity to request a positive amount of money after having performed an identical task. Consistent with the System Justification Theory, we find that self-identified obese individuals, due to a preexisting false consciousness, request significantly lower amounts of money than non-obese ones. A within subject comparison between self-reports and external interviewers' evaluations reveals that the excessive weight felt by the "self" but not reported by evaluators captures the self-weight bias not only for obese but also for non-obese individuals. Linking our experimental results to the supply side of the labour market, we argue that self-weight bias, as expressed by lower salary requests, enhances discriminatory behaviour against individuals who feel, but may not actually be, obese and consequently exacerbates the wage gab across weight.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Article number= 1454
Research Areas: A. > Business School > Economics
Item ID: 20520
Notes on copyright: Copyright © 2016 Proestakis and Brañas-Garza. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
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Depositing User: Pablo Branas Garza
Date Deposited: 07 Oct 2016 09:54
Last Modified: 01 Sep 2017 10:56
URI: http://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/20520

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