Muslim Discrimination: Evidence From Two Lost-Letter Experiments


  • Ali M. Ahmed

    Corresponding author
    1. School of Business and Economics
      Linnaeus University
      Växjö, Sweden
    Search for more papers by this author
    • 1

      I would like to thank two anonymous reviewers and the editor for their useful suggestions and comments. The financial support from Jan Wallanders and the Tom Hedelius Foundation is appreciated.

Ali M. Ahmed, School of Business and Economics, Linnaeus University, SE-351 95 Växjö, Sweden. E-mail:


Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, there has been considerable concern about whether Muslims living in Western countries are targets of prejudice. A considerable amount of survey-based evidence suggests that Muslims are victims of discrimination. This paper tested this hypothesis. Two lost-letter experiments were conducted to test whether the difference in returned letters would be attributable to whether the addressee was Muslim or Swedish. The results show that Muslims receive far fewer letters than do Swedes. However, this discrimination only appears when the lost letters contain money; in which case, the finder gains by not posting the letter.