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News FYI, here's the study I was talking about

  1. Nov 19, 2003 #1
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 19, 2003 #2
    "The 50 percent gap in callback rates is statistically very significant, Bertrand and Mullainathan note in Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination (NBER Working Paper No. 9873). It indicates that a white name yields as many more callbacks as an additional eight years of experience. Race, the authors add, also affects the reward to having a better resume. Whites with higher quality resumes received 30 percent more callbacks than whites with lower quality resumes. But the positive impact of a better resume for those with Africa-American names was much smaller.
    "While one may have expected that improved credentials may alleviate employers' fear that African-American applicants are deficient in some unobservable skills, this is not the case in our data," the authors write. "Discrimination therefore appears to bite twice, making it harder not only for African-Americans to find a job but also to improve their employability."
    From a policy standpoint, this aspect of the findings suggests that training programs alone may not be enough to alleviate the barriers raised by discrimination, the authors write. "If African-Americans recognize how employers reward their skills, they may be rationally more reluctant than whites to even participate in these programs."
    The experiment, conducted between July 2001 and January 2002, reveals several other aspects of discrimination. If the fictitious resume indicates that the applicant lives in a wealthier, or more educated, or more-white neighborhood, the callback rate rises. Interestingly, this effect does not differ by race. Indeed, if ghettos and bad neighborhoods are particularly stigmatizing for African-Americans, one might have expected them to be helped more than whites by having a "good" address.
    Further, discrimination levels are statistically uniform across all the occupation and industry categories covered in the experiment. Federal contractors, sometimes regarded as more severely constrained by affirmative action laws, do not discriminate less. Neither do larger employers, or employers who explicitly state that they are "Equal Opportunity Employer" in their ads.
    Another finding is that employers located in more African-American neighborhoods in Chicago are slightly less likely to discriminate. There is also little evidence that social background of applicants – suggested by the names used on resumes – drives the extent of discrimination.
  4. Nov 20, 2003 #3


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    I'd like to compare this study to the study done several years ago that showed another comparision of names, not race related but with similar results.
    Are you familiar with the study I'm referring to?
  5. Nov 20, 2003 #4
    Is it one with male and female names, kat?
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