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Does Employment Quota Explain Occupational Choice Among Disadvantaged Groups? A Natural Experiment from India


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  • Prakash, Nishith
  • Howard, Larry


This paper examines the effect of a federally-mandated public sector employment quota policy for minorities on their occupational choice. We utilize multiple logit models to estimate the effect of the policy on the choice between a high, middle, or low-skill public sector occupation during the 1980s and 1990s. The main findings are, first, the policy has a significant effect on the choice of occupation for both groups. The policy increases the probability of the scheduled caste group choosing high-skill occupations and decreases the probability of choosing middle-skill occupations. In contrast, the policy decreases the probability of the scheduled tribe group choosing high-skill occupations and increases their probability of choosing low-skill occupations. Second, the influence of the policy is interrelated with an individual's years of schooling. Third, we find evidence of employment quota externalities in that a policy targeted at one group affects the occupational choice of the other group. Overall, the results suggest that federally-mandated employment quotas do change occupational choice for the target disadvantaged groups and contribute to their improved socio-economic standing.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 13573.

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Date of creation: 29 Nov 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:13573

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Keywords: Occupational choice; Skill; Caste; India;

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  1. Boskin, Michael J, 1974. "A Conditional Logit Model of Occupational Choice," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(2), pages 389-98, Part I, M.
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Cited by:
  1. A Aggarwal & R Freguglia & G Johnes & G Spricigo, 2011. "Education and labour market outcomes : evidence from India," Working Papers 615663, Lancaster University Management School, Economics Department.


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