Discrimination by Politicians: Evidence from the UK

Last registered on August 26, 2021

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
Discrimination by Politicians: Evidence from the UK
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0003876
Initial registration date
February 11, 2019
Last updated
August 26, 2021, 11:54 AM EDT

Locations

Primary Investigator

Affiliation

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
LSE

Additional Trial Information

Status
Completed
Start date
2019-02-18
End date
2019-09-19
Secondary IDs
Prior work
This trial does not extend or rely on any prior RCTs.
Abstract
We conduct an audit study to explore bias by politicians on the basis of the religion of constituents.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Crawfurd, Lee and Ukasha Ramli. 2021. "Discrimination by Politicians: Evidence from the UK." AEA RCT Registry. August 26. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.3876-1.1
Former Citation
Crawfurd, Lee, Lee Crawfurd and Ukasha Ramli. 2021. "Discrimination by Politicians: Evidence from the UK." AEA RCT Registry. August 26. https://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/3876/history/98621
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2019-02-18
Intervention End Date
2019-02-28

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
The response rate, response time, and cordiality of responses, by political party.
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
The response rate will be the proportion of emails that are answered. Response time will be average time to response, conditional on response. Cordiality is a dummy indicator for whether the response includes a salutation such as "Dear... ".

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
Each recipient is randomised to receive a different treatment or control condition.
Experimental Design Details
Each local politician is randomly assigned to receive an email from one of 6 treatment names (3 religions, 2 sexes) and one of two email scripts. In effect the Jewish and Muslim -sounding names are treatments and a Christian-sounding name is the control group. One of the email scripts in non-descript, whereas the other explicitly mentions the emailer's religion.
Randomization Method
In office by computer
Randomization Unit
Individual politician
Was the treatment clustered?
No

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
400 councils
Sample size: planned number of observations
10,000 politicians
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
3,422 politicians receive an email from a Muslim, the same from a Jew, and the same from a Christian.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
The MDE is .0581 for the two main political parties.
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number

Post-Trial

Post Trial Information

Study Withdrawal

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Intervention

Is the intervention completed?
No
Data Collection Complete
Yes
Data Collection Completion Date
Final Sample Size: Number of Clusters (Unit of Randomization)
Was attrition correlated with treatment status?
No
Final Sample Size: Total Number of Observations
Final Sample Size (or Number of Clusters) by Treatment Arms
Data Publication

Data Publication

Is public data available?
No

Program Files

Program Files
Reports, Papers & Other Materials

Relevant Paper(s)

Abstract
Are Labour party politicians anti-Semitic, and are Conservative party politicians Islamophobic? In this correspondence study we measure the responsiveness of elected local representatives in the United Kingdom to requests from putative constituents from minority religious groups. We send short email requests to 10,268 local government representatives from each of the main political parties, from stereotypically Islamic, Jewish, and Christian names. Response rates are six to seven percentage points lower to stereotypically Muslim or Jewish names. The two major political parties both show equal bias towards the two minority group names. Results suggest that the bias in response may be implicit. Bias is lower in more dense and diverse locations.
Citation
Crawfurd L, Ramli U. Discrimination by politicians against religious minorities: Experimental evidence from the UK. Party Politics. June 2021. doi:10.1177/13540688211021053

Reports & Other Materials