A soon to be published research article in the Academy of Management Journal examines the effect of race and gender on customer satisfaction surveys.
From the main author’s (extremely informative) press release :
A research article set to appear in the flagship management journal, Academy of Management Journal, helps solve the puzzle of why women and minorities get paid 25 percent less than white men. The persistent wage gap is puzzling because managers should logically prefer to hire less costly women and minority workers, thereby driving up such workers’ wages. Although many assume that the wage gap persists because managers are biased in favor of white men, there is little research evidence supporting this hypothesis (managerial bias accounts for 1-2 percent of employee job performance ratings). The paper’s authors, who conducted their research from five North American business schools, found that customers are biased against women and minority employees, which means that managers have a significant financial incentive to pay women and minorities less.
A PDF of the complete article can be found here .