Peter Kuhn received his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University in 1983. Since then he has held faculty positions at the University of Western Ontario, McMaster University, and currently at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Since April 1998, he is a Research Fellow of IZA, Bonn. He has published papers on various aspects of labour economics, including unions, discrimination, immigration, displaced workers, unemployment insurance, and employment contract theory. Kuhn is Associate Editor of the Industrial and Labor Relations Review and serves on the editorial board of AEJ: Applied and Labour Economics. He is the founding director of the Leonard and Gretchan Broom Demography Center at UC Santa Barbara. He has been an IZA Visiting Research Fellow every year since 2009-2013.



IZA Discussion Paper No. 9891
Miguel Delgado Helleseter, Peter J. Kuhn, Kailing Shen

When permitted by law, employers sometimes state the preferred age and sex of their employees in job ads. We study this practice using data from one Mexican and three Chinese job boards, showing that it is widely used to request both genders and is especially prevalent in jobs with low...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 8289
published as 'Do Employers Prefer Migrant Workers? Evidence from a Chinese Job Board' in: IZA Journal of Labor Economics, 4(2), 2015,

We study urban Chinese employers' preferences between workers with and without a local residence permit (hukou) using callback information from an Internet job board serving private sector employers. We find that employers prefer migrant workers to locals who are identically matched to the job's requirements; these preferences are especially strong...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 7273
Revised version published as "Decision-Environment Effects on Intertemporal Financial Choices: How Relevant are Resource-Depletion Models?" in Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, 137, 72-89, 2017.

We experimentally manipulate two aspects of the cognitive environment, cognitive depletion and recent sugar intake, and estimate their effects on individuals' time preferences in a way that allows us to identify the structural parameters of a simple (α,β,δ) intertemporal utility function for each person. We find that individuals exposed to...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 6848
published in: Corrado Giulietti, Konstantinos Tatsiramos and Klaus F. Zimmermann (eds.), Research in Labor Economics, vol 37, Labor Market Issues in China, Emerald, 2013

Can having more education than a job requires reduce one's chances of being offered the job? We study this question in a sample of applications to jobs that are posted on an urban Chinese website. We find that being overqualified in this way does not reduce the success rates of...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5999
revised version published as 'Are Women More Attracted to Co-operation Than Men?' in: Economic Journal, 2014, 125, 115-140.

Are women disproportionately attracted to work environments where cooperation rather than competition is rewarded? This paper reports the results of a real-effort experiment in which participants choose between an individual compensation scheme and a team-based payment scheme. We find that women are more likely than men to select team-based compensation...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5955
published in: The Economic Journal, 2014, 124(581), 1213–1233

While the Internet has been found to reduce trading frictions in a number of other markets, existing research has failed to detect such an effect in the labor market. In this paper, we replicate Kuhn and Skuterud's (2004) study – which found that Internet job search (IJS) was associated with...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 5195
published in: The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 2013, 128 (1), 287-336

We study firms' advertised gender preferences in a population of ads on a Chinese internet job board, and interpret these patterns using a simple employer search model. The model allows us to distinguish firms’ underlying gender preferences from firms’ propensities to restrict their search to their preferred gender. The model...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 4950
published in: American Economic Review, 2011, 101 (5), 2226-2247

Each week, the Dutch Postcode Lottery (PCL) randomly selects a postal code, and distributes cash and a new BMW to lottery participants in that code. We study the effects of these shocks on lottery winners and their neighbors. Consistent with the life-cycle hypothesis, the effects on winners’ consumption are largely...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 4941
published in: O. Ashenfelter and D. Card (eds.), Handbook of Labor Economics, Amsterdam: Elsevier, 2011

This paper surveys the contributions of laboratory experiments to labor economics. We begin with a discussion of methodological issues: why (and when) is a lab experiment the best approach; how do laboratory experiments compare to field experiments; and what are the main design issues? We then summarize the substantive contributions...

IZA Discussion Paper No. 4936
published in: Journal of Development Economics, 2011, 95 (1), 77-87

We introduce international mobility of knowledge workers into a model of Nash equilibrium IPR policy choice among countries. We show that governments have incentives to use IPRs in a bidding war for global talent, resulting in Nash equilibrium IPRs that can be too high, rather than too low, from a...