Testing for Ethnicity Discrimination among NHL Referees: A Duration Model Approach
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Motivated by an endogenity issue between score margin and penalty events, this paper tests for ethnicity discrimination among NHL referees by analyzing over 2.6 million player shifts. Using duration models to compare the penalty rates of various player–referee ethnicity combinations, we find that French Canadian referees call penalties at significantly faster rates on English Canadian players than do English Canadian referees. The results are broadly consistent with the prior discrimination literature and are intuitively reasonable within the context of the historic French–English tensions throughout Canada’s history.
Keywordsdiscrimination hockey ethnicity
JEL ClassificationsJ15 J44 J71 L83
The authors would like to thank anonymous referees’ and the editor as well as numerous attendees at the 2011 Southern Economics Association conference, and the 2012 European Conference on Sport Economics for helpful suggestions.
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