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Sorting through Affirmative Action: Three Field Experiments in Colombia

Author

Listed:
  • Marcela Ibanez
  • Gerhard Riener

Abstract

The use of affirmative action policies to promote female employment remains debated. Do affirmative action policies attract female applicants, and does that come at the expense of deterring highly qualified male applicants? In three field experiments in Colombia, we compare job seekers who are informed of affirmative action selection criteria before they apply with those who are told after applying. We find that the gains in attracting female applicants far outweigh the losses in male applicants. Moreover, our results indicate that affirmative action does not decrease the quality of the top 15th percentile of the pool of applicants.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcela Ibanez & Gerhard Riener, 2018. "Sorting through Affirmative Action: Three Field Experiments in Colombia," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 36(2), pages 437-478.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlabec:doi:10.1086/694469
    DOI: 10.1086/694469
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Alejandro Hoyos & Hugo Ñopo & Ximena Peña, 2010. "The Persistent Gender Earnings Gap in Colombia, 1994-2006," Documentos CEDE 007094, Universidad de los Andes - CEDE.
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    Cited by:

    1. Andreas Leibbrandt & John A. List, 2018. "Do Equal Employment Opportunity Statements Backfire? Evidence From A Natural Field Experiment On Job-Entry Decisions," NBER Working Papers 25035, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    2. Valeria Maggian & Antonio Nicolò, 2016. "The wrong man for the job: biased beliefs and job mismatching," Post-Print halshs-01324733, HAL.
    3. Andrei Matveenko & Sergei Mikhalishchev, 2019. "Attentional Role of Quota Implementation," CERGE-EI Working Papers wp645, The Center for Economic Research and Graduate Education - Economics Institute, Prague.
    4. Bonnet, Céline & Schain, Jan Philip, 2017. "An empirical analysis of mergers: Efficiency gains and impact on consumer prices," DICE Discussion Papers 244, University of Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J21 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Force and Employment, Size, and Structure
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J48 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - Particular Labor Markets; Public Policy
    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments

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