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Discrimination, Bayesian Updating of Employer Beliefs and Human Capital Accumulation

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  • Farmer, Amy
  • Terrell, Dek
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    Abstract

    This article proposes a dynamic labor market discrimination model based on Bayesian updating of beliefs by the employer. The employer forms initial beliefs of worker ability conditional on group and updates his beliefs each period based on observed output. Inaccurate initial priors lead to diminished human capital investment among members of the undervalued group and may generate inequities lasting many periods or even permanently. Statistical discrimination models in which differing variances drive the inequity are special cases of the model. Copyright 1996 by Oxford University Press.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

    Volume (Year): 34 (1996)
    Issue (Month): 2 (April)
    Pages: 204-19

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:34:y:1996:i:2:p:204-19

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    Cited by:
    1. Bunzel, Helle & Marcoul, Philippe, 2008. "Can racially unbiased police perpetuate long-run discrimination?," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 36-47, October.
    2. Verdier, T. & Zenou, Y., 2001. "Racial beliefs, location and the causes of crime," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0101, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    3. Nick Feltovich & Chris Papageorgiou, 2004. "An Experimental Study of Statistical Discrimination by Employers," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 70(4), pages 837-849, April.
    4. Barth, Erling & Bratsberg, Bernt & Raaum, Oddbjørn, 2012. "Immigrant wage profiles within and between establishments," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(4), pages 541-556.
    5. Pfeifer, Christian & Sohr, Tatjana, 2008. "Analysing the Gender Wage Gap Using Personnel Records of a Large German Company," IZA Discussion Papers 3533, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    6. Proto, Eugenio & Sgroi, Daniel, 2012. "Self-Centered Beliefs : An Empirical Approach," The Warwick Economics Research Paper Series (TWERPS) 978, University of Warwick, Department of Economics.
    7. David Neumark, 1998. "Labor Market Information and Wage Differentials by Race and Sex," NBER Working Papers 6573, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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