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Antidiscrimination or Reverse Discrimination: The Impact of Changing Demographics, Title VII, and Affirmative Action on Productivity

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  • Jonathan S. Leonard

Abstract

This study estimates the changes over time in the relative productivities of minorities and females. I find no significant evidence that the productivity of minorities or females decreased relative to that of white males as relative minority and female employment increased during the 1960s and 1970s. This study also compares the impact of Title VII and affirmative action and presents evidence that Title VII litigation has played a significant role in increasing black employment. This suggests that the employment of minorities and females has not entailed large efficiency costs and that Title VII litigation has had some success in fighting racial discrimination. The EEOC has sometimes been credited with opening up new pools of labor that corporations somehow contrived to ignore, and occasionally with hastening the breakdown of traditional barriers to labor mobility.... But in the context of the market's endless search for efficiency, these anomalies would have been eliminated anyway, leaving only the question of whether they were worth the expenditures compelled by law. Affirmative action is a net cost to the economy....And the true dynamic effects-the opportunity cost of all this expense and effort, the diminution of competition, inefficiencies due to the employment and promotion of marginal labor and the consequent demoralization of good workers-can only be a matter of conjecture, although they are clearly the most important of all. Senator Orrin Hatch, 1980

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 19 (1984)
Issue (Month): 2 ()
Pages: 145-174

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:19:y:1984:i:2:p:145-174

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Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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  1. Morris Goldstein & Robert S. Smith, 1976. "The estimated impact of the antidiscrimination program aimed at federal contractors," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 29(4), pages 523-543, July.
  2. James J. Heckman & Kenneth I. Wolpin, 1976. "Does the contract compliance program work? An analysis of Chicago data," Industrial and Labor Relations Review, ILR Review, Cornell University, ILR School, vol. 29(4), pages 544-564, July.
  3. Leonard, Jonathan S, 1984. "The Impact of Affirmative Action on Employment," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 2(4), pages 439-63, October.
  4. Charles Brown, 1981. "The Federal Attack on Labor Market Discrimination: The Mouse that Roared?," NBER Working Papers 0669, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Orley Ashenfelter & James J. Heckman, 1974. "Measuring the Effect of an Anti-Discrimination Program," NBER Working Papers 0050, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Zvi Griliches, 1967. "Production Functions in Manufacturing: Some Preliminary Results," NBER Chapters, in: The Theory and Empirical Analysis of Production, pages 275-340 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Brown, Charles & Medoff, James, 1978. "Trade Unions in the Production Process," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 86(3), pages 355-78, June.
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Cited by:
  1. Linda Barrington & Kenneth R. Troske, 2001. "Workforce Diversity and Productivity: An Analysis of Employer-Employee Match Data," Economics Program Working Papers 01-02, The Conference Board, Economics Program.
  2. Kurtulus, Fidan Ana & Tomaskovic-Devey, Donald, 2012. "Do Women Top Managers Help Women Advance? A Panel Study Using EEO-1 Records," IZA Discussion Papers 6444, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  3. H. J. Holzer, . "Employer hiring decisions and antidiscrimination policy," Institute for Research on Poverty Discussion Papers 1085-96, University of Wisconsin Institute for Research on Poverty.
  4. Rutherglen G, 1994. "Protecting aliens, immigrants, and ethnic minorities from discrimination in employment : the experience in the United States," ILO Working Papers 298713, International Labour Organization.
  5. Harry J. Holzer & David Neumark, 2006. "Affirmative action: What do we know?," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(2), pages 463-490.
  6. Joyce Burnette, 2011. "The Emergence of Wage Discrimination in U.S. Manufacturing," Working Papers 11-18, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  7. Tim Callan & Anne Wren, 1992. "An Economy-Wide Investigation of Sex Differences in Wage Rates," Papers WP034, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI).
  8. Harry Holzer & David Neumark, 1996. "Are Affirmative Action Hires Less Qualified? Evidence from Employer-Employee Data on New Hires," NBER Working Papers 5603, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Judith Fields & Edward N. Wolff, 1997. "Gender Wage Differentials, Affirmative Action, and Employment Growth on the Industry Level," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_186, Levy Economics Institute.
  10. Noel Uri & J. Mixon, 1992. "Effects of U.S. equal employment opportunity and affirmative action programs on women's employment stability," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 26(2), pages 113-126, May.
  11. Justin McCrary, 2006. "The Effect of Court-Ordered Hiring Quotas on the Composition and Quality of Police," NBER Working Papers 12368, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Fidan Ana Kurtulus & Donald Tomaskovic-Devey, 2011. "Do Women Top Managers Help Women Advance? A Panel Study Using EEO-1 Records," UMASS Amherst Economics Working Papers 2011-14, University of Massachusetts Amherst, Department of Economics.
  13. Zeynep Hansen & Hideo Owan & Jie Pan, 2006. "The Impact of Group Diversity on Performance and Knowledge Spillover -- An Experiment in a College Classroom," NBER Working Papers 12251, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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