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Detecting Discrimination in Audit and Correspondence Studies

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  • Neumark, David

    ()
    (University of California, Irvine)

Abstract

Audit studies testing for discrimination have been criticized because applicants from different groups may not appear identical to employers. Correspondence studies address this criticism by using fictitious paper applicants whose qualifications can be made identical across groups. However, Heckman and Siegelman (1993) show that group differences in the variance of unobservable determinants of productivity can still generate spurious evidence of discrimination in either direction. This paper shows how to recover an unbiased estimate of discrimination when the correspondence study includes variation in applicant characteristics that affect hiring. The method is applied to actual data and assessed using Monte Carlo methods.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in its series IZA Discussion Papers with number 5263.

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Length: 40 pages
Date of creation: Oct 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp5263

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Keywords: discrimination; audit study; correspondence study;

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References

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  1. William A. Darity & Patrick L. Mason, 1998. "Evidence on Discrimination in Employment: Codes of Color, Codes of Gender," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 12(2), pages 63-90, Spring.
  2. Joanna N. Lahey, 2008. "Age, Women, and Hiring: An Experimental Study," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
  3. Lundberg, Shelly J & Startz, Richard, 1983. "Private Discrimination and Social Intervention in Competitive Labor Markets," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 73(3), pages 340-47, June.
  4. Lahey, Joanna N. & Beasley, Ryan A., 2009. "Computerizing audit studies," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 508-514, June.
  5. Cornelißen, Thomas, 2005. "Standard errors of marginal effects in the heteroskedastic probit model," Hannover Economic Papers (HEP) dp-320, Leibniz Universität Hannover, Wirtschaftswissenschaftliche Fakultät.
  6. Hellerstein, J-K & Neumark, D, 1995. "Sex, Wages, and Productivity : an Empirical Analysis of Israeli, Firm-Level Data," Papers 9501, Michigan State - Econometrics and Economic Theory.
  7. Hellerstein, Judith K. & Neumark, David, 2005. "Using Matched Employer-Employee Data to Study Labor Market Discrimination," IZA Discussion Papers 1555, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Riach, Peter A. & Rich, Judy, 2007. "An Experimental Investigation of Age Discrimination in the Spanish Labour Market," IZA Discussion Papers 2654, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. P. A. Riach & J. Rich, 2002. "Field Experiments of Discrimination in the Market Place," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 480-518, November.
  10. Neumark, David, 1996. "Sex Discrimination in Restaurant Hiring: An Audit Study," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 111(3), pages 915-41, August.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Eva Olimpia Arceo Gómez & Raymundo Campos-Vázquez, 2013. "Race and Marriage in the Labor Market: A Discrimination Correspondence Study in a Developing Country," Working papers DTE 553, CIDE, División de Economía.
  2. Morten Hedegaard & Jean-Robert Tyran, 2014. "The Price of Prejudice," Discussion Papers 14-05, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
  3. Stijn Baert, 2014. "Wage Subsidies and Hiring Chances for the Disabled: Some Causal Evidence," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 14/886, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  4. Anthony Edo & Nicolas Jacquemet & Constantine Yannelis, 2013. "Language Skills and Homophilous Hiring Discrimination: Evidence from Gender- and Racially-Differentiated Applications," Documents de travail du Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne 13058, Université Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris 1), Centre d'Economie de la Sorbonne.
  5. Baert, Stijn & Cockx, Bart & Gheyle, Niels & Vandamme, Cora, 2013. "Do Employers Discriminate Less If Vacancies Are Difficult to Fill? Evidence from a Field Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 7145, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  6. John M. Nunley & Adam Pugh & Nicholas Romero & Richard Alan Seals, Jr., 2014. "An Examination of Racial Discrimination in the Labor Market for Recent College Graduates: Estimates from the Field," Auburn Economics Working Paper Series auwp2014-06, Department of Economics, Auburn University.
  7. S. Baert, 2013. "Career Lesbians. Getting Hired for Not Having Kids?," Working Papers of Faculty of Economics and Business Administration, Ghent University, Belgium 13/842, Ghent University, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration.
  8. Azmat, Ghazala & Petrongolo, Barbara, 2014. "Gender and the Labor Market: What Have We Learned from Field and Lab Experiments?," IZA Discussion Papers 8135, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  9. Zhou, Xiangyi & Zhang, Jie & Song, Xuetao, 2013. "Gender Discrimination in Hiring: Evidence from 19,130 Resumes in China," MPRA Paper 43543, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. Ghazala Azmat & Barbara Petrongolo, 2014. "Gender and the Labor Market: What Have We Learned from Field and Lab Experiments?," CEP Occasional Papers 40, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.

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