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Signals from On High and the Power of “Growth Mindset”: A Field Experiment in Workplace Diversity
Initial registration date
November 26, 2019
November 27, 2019 10:45 AM EST
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Brigham Young University
Other Primary Investigator(s)
Claremont Mckenna Univresity
Additional Trial Information
White males occupy most high-profile positions in the largest U.S. corporations. Many firms have set ambitious goals to increase demographic diversity among employees, but there is a dearth of empirical evidence on effective ways to do so. We run a large field experiment with a Fortune 500 company of over 15,000 employees to test several approaches suggested by the literature. By randomly varying a small portion of the content in recruiting materials seen by over 6,000 prospective applicants in two different populations at different stages in their career progress, we test different types of signals aimed to increase interest from racial minorities and women.
Flory, Jeffrey , Andreas Leibbrandt and Olga Stoddard. 2019. "Signals from On High and the Power of “Growth Mindset”: A Field Experiment in Workplace Diversity." AEA RCT Registry. November 27.
Intervention Start Date
Intervention End Date
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Interested in position, applied to position, how far individuals advanced in interview process, whether they were hired
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
To deepen our understanding of how employers can effectively attract women and ethnic minorities into high-profile career tracks, we embed a natural field experiment in the annual recruiting drive of one of the largest global firms in the financial services industry. We randomize a small part of the information content that individuals see prior to applying. In particular, we vary how the employer presents itself to prospective applicants in terms of whether it values diversity among its employees, and how this value is conveyed. We also intentionally design the experiment to sample from two different populations that face different constraints and stakes due to the differing stages in their career progress (internship-seekers and entry level job-seekers). This enables us to test predictions on heterogeneous effects by career stage and help shed light on the drivers of impacts.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization done by Qualtrics' randomization method in survey design
Was the treatment clustered?
Sample size: planned number of clusters
Sample size: planned number of observations
5500 prospective job applications
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
We plan to have approximately 600 individuals in each of the eight treatments ( diversity, diversity - supported, CEO statement, CEO statement - supported, team, team - supported, team -seeking, growth mindset)
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
Based on our prior work and a related experiment, we estimate the minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes to be 300.
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
The Institutional Review Board of Claremont McKenna College
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number