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Color Blind Is Not Color Neutral: Testing Differences and Affirmative Action

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  • Benoit, Jean-Pierre
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    Abstract

    Employers or universities determine the qualifications of applicants based on the results of a test. Members of socioeconomically disadvantaged groups tend to score less well than equally qualified members of other groups. As a result, color blind practices discriminate against disadvantaged groups. This discrimination may persist even if rational firms realize that the test is (statistically) biased. Furthermore, test bias against a group is consistent with the test overpredicting group members' performance. An affirmative action program may be needed to achieve color-neutral results. Copyright 1999 by Oxford University Press.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Journal of Law, Economics and Organization.

    Volume (Year): 15 (1999)
    Issue (Month): 2 (July)
    Pages: 378-400

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    Handle: RePEc:oup:jleorg:v:15:y:1999:i:2:p:378-400

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    Postal: Oxford University Press, Great Clarendon Street, Oxford OX2 6DP, UK
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    Cited by:
    1. Gregory Price, 2008. "NEA Presidential Address: Black Economists of the World You Cite!!," The Review of Black Political Economy, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 1-12, March.
    2. Ajit Mishra, 1998. "A Theory Of Discrimination Based On Signalling And Strategic Information Acquisition," Dundee Discussion Papers in Economics 088, Economic Studies, University of Dundee.

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