Any differences in response are due solely to the race manipulation and not to other characteristics of a real person. One weakness of the study is that it simply measures callbacks for interviews, not whether an applicant gets the job and what the wage for a successful applicant would be.
A race is randomly assigned to each resume. Further, discrimination levels are statistically uniform across all the occupation and industry categories covered in the experiment.
Thus, they experimentally manipulated perception of race via the name on the resume. The advantage of their study, the authors note, is that it relies on resumes, not actual people applying for jobs, to test discrimination.
Another problem of the study is that newspaper ads represent only one channel for job search. This would suggest either employer prejudice or employer perception that race signals lower productivity.
There is also little evidence that social background of applicants - suggested by the names used on resumes - drives the extent of discrimination.
Also, the study has a large sample size, compared to tests of discrimination with real applicants. Another finding is that employers located in more African-American neighborhoods in Chicago are slightly less likely to discriminate. To see how the credentials of job applicants affect discrimination, the authors varied the quality of the resumes they used in response to a given ad.
Race, the authors add, also affects the reward to having a better resume. In total, the authors responded to more than 1, employment ads in the sales, administrative support, clerical, and customer services job categories, sending out nearly 5, resumes. Higher quality applicants were given a little more labor market experience on average and fewer holes in their employment history.
Neither do larger employers, or employers who explicitly state that they are "Equal Opportunity Employer" in their ads. Despite laws against discrimination, affirmative action, a degree of employer enlightenment, and the desire by some businesses to enhance profits by hiring those most qualified regardless of race, African-Americans are twice as likely as whites to be unemployed and they earn nearly 25 percent less when they are employed.
They were also portrayed as more likely to have an email address, to have completed some certification degree, to possess foreign language skills, or to have been awarded some honors. The ads covered a large spectrum of job quality, from cashier work at retail establishments and clerical work in a mailroom to office and sales management positions.
So the results cannot be translated into hiring rates or earnings. Whites with higher quality resumes received 30 percent more callbacks than whites with lower quality resumes. If the fictitious resume indicates that the applicant lives in a wealthier, or more educated, or more-white neighborhood, the callback rate rises.
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. In response to help-wanted ads in Chicago and Boston newspapers, they sent resumes with either African-American- or white-sounding names and then measured the number of callbacks each resume received for interviews.
It indicates that a white name yields as many more callbacks as an additional eight years of experience. Half of the applicants were assigned African-American names that are "remarkably common" in the black population, the other half white sounding names, such as Emily Walsh or Greg Baker.
The results indicate large racial differences in callback rates to a phone line with a voice mailbox attached and a message recorded by someone of the appropriate race and gender.James Poterba, president James Poterba is President of the National Bureau of Economic Research.
He is also the Mitsui Professor of Economics at M.I.T. Financial incentives for teachers to increase student performance is an increasingly popular education policy around the world.
This paper describes a school-based randomized trial in over two-hundred New York City public schools designed to better understand the impact of teacher incentives on.Download