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Discrimination based on political beliefs: A field experiment on the freedom of assembly.

  • Public officials have been shown to discriminate against citizens based on race and gender. We suggest that bureaucrats also discriminate based on political beliefs that citizens reveal to them. We support this argument with evidence from the application of freedom of assembly rights in the context of gay marriage. We confront German city administrations with requests about the organization of a political rally and randomize the underlying political belief and cause: the promotion of or opposition to same-sex marriage. We find that none of these causes receives discriminatory treatment per se. Instead, further explorative, yet theory-guided, analysis indicates that the cultural and political environment within which bureaucracies are embedded determines which of the two requests receives worse and less helpful answers. I.e. the treatment effect seems to be moderated by the local prevalence of Catholicism and the strength of sexually conservative political parties that oppose same-sex marriage.

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Author:Stephan Grohs, Christian Adam, Christoph Knill
ISSN:0952-0767; 1749-4192 (e-journal)
Parent Title (German):Public Policy and Administration
Place of publication:London
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2020/02/17
Publishing Institution:Deutsche Universität für Verwaltungswissenschaften
Release Date:2020/02/25
First Page:261
Last Page:282
Documents ordered by chairs:Lehrstuhl für Politikwissenschaft (Univ.-Prof. Dr. Stephan Grohs)
Access Rights:Frei zugänglich
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt