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Skills and Race in Hiring: Quantitative Findings from Face-to-Face Interviews


  • Philip Moss

    (University of Massachusetts, Lowell)

  • Chris Tilly

    (University of Massachusetts, Lowell)


There is evidence that shifts in the demand for labor are disadvantaging young black men. To help explain this change, we analyze a set of quantitative measures derived from face-to-face interviews of employers in Detroit and Los Angeles. The measures encompass employer skill demands, hiring procedures, and racial attitudes, with racial representation (relative to the key outcome variable. Among other results, we find lower black representation (relative to area population) in firms with a literacy or numeracy requirement and firms that rely on the personnel interview as their primary screening device.

Suggested Citation

  • Philip Moss & Chris Tilly, 1995. "Skills and Race in Hiring: Quantitative Findings from Face-to-Face Interviews," Eastern Economic Journal, Eastern Economic Association, vol. 21(3), pages 357-374, Summer.
  • Handle: RePEc:eej:eeconj:v:21:y:1995:i:3:p:357-374

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    Cited by:

    1. Nelson Lim, 2002. "Who Has More Soft-skills?: Employers' Subjective Ratings of Work Qualities of Racial and Ethnic Groups," Working Papers 02-10, RAND Corporation.
    2. Burkert, Carola & Seibert, Holger, 2007. "Labour market outcomes after vocational training in Germany : equal opportunities for migrants and natives?," IAB Discussion Paper 200731, Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (IAB), Nürnberg [Institute for Employment Research, Nuremberg, Germany].
    3. Brian A. Jacob, 2010. "Do Principals Fire the Worst Teachers?," NBER Working Papers 15715, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

    More about this item


    Literacy; Race; Racial; Skills;

    JEL classification:

    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity


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