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|Age discrimination in personnel selection: A vignette study with HR managers in Austria
|The paper investigates age discrimination in personnel selection across different industries and positions in Austria. A factorial survey approach (FSA), also called vignette study, is applied. This semi-experimental research method combines the advantages of both survey research and classical experiments. A vignette is a short description of a social situation or a person that consists of several characteristics (factors and their levels) which can be simultaneously manipulated. The experimental design takes on all possible combinations of factor levels across all factors. Such design allows studying the effect of each factor on the dependent variable, as well as the effects of interactions between factors on the response variable. The impact of each dimension on respondent’s judgment can be estimated accurately. To make it more specific, through a vignette design it is possible to investigate the solely effect of age on selection decisions, a factor that is usually confounded with other factors in reality. Respondents in this study are HR managers from different organizations in Austria. They are confronted with scenarios of hypothetical applicants and are then asked to state the hiring desirability for the respective job seeker. The paper elaborates on the research method and presents first results.
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