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Urban and Regional Economics Seminars

Can Information Reduce Ethnic Discrimination : Evidence from Airbnb

Morgane Laouenan (Sorbonne)


Friday 01 March 2019 13:00 - 14:30

32L 2.04, 2nd Floor Conference Room, LSE, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PH

About this event

We use data from Airbnb to identify the mechanisms underlying discrimination against ethnic-minority hosts. Within the same neighbourhood, hosts from minority groups charge 3.2% less for comparable listings. Since ratings provide guests with increasingly rich information about a listing’s quality, we can measure the contribution of statistical discrimination, building upon Altonji and Pierret (2001). We find that statistical discrimination can account for the whole ethnic price gap: ethnic gaps would disappear if all unobservables were revealed. Also, three quarters (2.5 points) of the initial ethnic gap can be attributed to inaccurate stereotyping by potential guests about hosts’ average group quality.

This event will take place in 32L 2.04, 2nd Floor Conference Room, LSE, 32 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3PH.

The building is labelled on the map.

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This series is part of the CEP's Urban and spatial programme.