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Racial harassment, job satisfaction, and intentions to remain in the military


  • Heather Antecol


  • Deborah Cobb-Clark



Our results indicate that two-thirds of active-duty military personnel report experiencing offensive racial behaviors in the previous 12 months, while approximately one in ten report threatening racial incidents or career-related discrimination. Racial harassment significantly increases job dissatisfaction irrespective of the form of harassment considered. Furthermore, threatening racial incidents and career-related discrimination heighten intentions to leave the military, though there is no significant effect of racially offensive behavior on the intended job change of active-duty personnel. Finally, our results point to the importance of accounting for unobserved individual- and job-specific heterogeneity when assessing the consequences of racial harassment. In particular, single-equation models result in estimated effects of racial harassment on job satisfaction and intended job change that are generally understated.
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Suggested Citation

  • Heather Antecol & Deborah Cobb-Clark, 2009. "Racial harassment, job satisfaction, and intentions to remain in the military," Journal of Population Economics, Springer;European Society for Population Economics, vol. 22(3), pages 713-738, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:jopoec:v:22:y:2009:i:3:p:713-738
    DOI: 10.1007/s00148-007-0176-1

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Christian Dustmann & Francesca Fabbri & Ian Preston, 2011. "Racial Harassment, Ethnic Concentration, and Economic Conditions," Scandinavian Journal of Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 113(3), pages 689-711, September.
    2. Yamamura, Eiji, 2013. "Trial experience, satisfaction and incentive to bring another lawsuit: Does aspiration level influence winners and losers?," Japan and the World Economy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 125-131.
    3. Martin Gächter & David A. Savage & Benno Torgler, 2013. "Retaining the thin blue line: What shapes workers' intentions not to quit the current work environment," International Journal of Social Economics, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 40(5), pages 479-503, April.
    4. Martin Gachter & David A. Savage & Benno Torgler, 2009. "Retaining the Thin Blue Line: What shapes workers' willingness not to quit the current work environment?," School of Economics and Finance Discussion Papers and Working Papers Series 253, School of Economics and Finance, Queensland University of Technology, revised 28 Oct 2009.
    5. Antecol, Heather & Cobb-Clark, Deborah A., 2008. "Identity and racial harassment," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 66(3-4), pages 529-557, June.
    6. Otrachshenko, Vladimir & Popova, Olga, 2014. "Life (dis)satisfaction and the intention to migrate: Evidence from Central and Eastern Europe," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 40-49.
    7. Böckerman, Petri & Ilmakunnas, Pekka, 2007. "Job disamenities, job satisfaction, quit intentions, and actual separations: putting the pieces together," MPRA Paper 3245, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    8. Antecol, Heather & Barcus, Vanessa E. & Cobb-Clark, Deborah, 2009. "Gender-biased behavior at work: Exploring the relationship between sexual harassment and sex discrimination," Journal of Economic Psychology, Elsevier, vol. 30(5), pages 782-792, October.
    9. repec:bla:indres:v:56:y:2017:i:2:p:263-292 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item


    Job satisfaction; Racial harassment; Quits; J16; J28;

    JEL classification:

    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy


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