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Racial Bias in the Manager-Employee Relationship: An Analysis of Quits, Dismissals, and Promotions at a Large Retail Firm

  • Laura Giuliano
  • David I. Levine
  • Jonathan Leonard

Using data from a large U.S. retail firm, we examine how racial matches between managers and their employees affect rates of employee quits, dismissals, and promotions. We exploit changes in management at hundreds of stores to estimate hazard models with store fixed effects that control for all unobserved differences across store locations. We find a general pattern of own-race bias in that employees usually have better outcomes when they are the same race as their manager. But we do find anomalies in this pattern, particularly when the manager-employee match violates traditional racial hierarchies (for example, nonwhites managing whites).

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File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/46/1/26
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Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 46 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 26-52

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:46:y:2011:i:1:p:26-52
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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  1. Becker, Gary S., 1971. "The Economics of Discrimination," University of Chicago Press Economics Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 2, number 9780226041162.
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