Affective Polarization: Does Political Affiliation Affect An Applicant's Hireability?

Date

2019-05

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Abstract

The present study seeks to examine the role that political affective polarization (A.P.) may play in an employment setting: specifically perceptions of a job candidate, hiring decisions, and expectations for that potential new employee. Participants were randomly assigned to read one of three comparable resumes: one signaling Democrat partisanship, a second signaling Republican partisanship, and a third neutral resume that did not signal any partisanship. Participants were asked about their perceptions of the job applicant and the standards they would set if the fabricated job applicant were hired. A statistically significant relationship was found between A.P. and the performance standards set for the job applicant. The theoretical and practical implications of this result are discussed. In addition, the present study highlights the need to study A.P. outside of voting behaviors, and instead, look at other domains of life.

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Keywords

hiring, politics, affective polarization, partisanship, workplace

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