Suanna Oh, briq postdoctoral fellow since September 2021, has been selected as the winner of this year’s Distinguished CESifo Affiliate Award in the area of behavioral economics. The prize is funded by the international CESifo research network based in Munich and aims at identifying promising young researchers. Previous winners include briq research director Florian Zimmermann and briq research affiliate Matt Lowe.
Oh’s paper “Does Identity Affect Labor Supply?” investigates this question in rural India, focusing on the effect of caste identity on job-specific labor supply. In a field experiment, laborers chose whether to take up various one-day job offers, which differed in associations with specific castes. Workers were less willing to accept offers that were linked to castes other than their own, especially when those castes ranked lower in the social hierarchy. Workers forewent large payments – ten times their daily wage for half of the sample – to avoid job offers that conflicted with their caste identity, regardless of whether these decisions were made in private.
Read more about the paper in a VoxDev column.