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Awareness programs and change in taste-based caste prejudice

Author

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  • Ritwik Banerjee

    (Department of Economics and Business, Aarhus University, Denmark)

  • Nabanita Datta Gupta

    (Department of Economics and Business, Aarhus University, Denmark)

Abstract

Becker’s theory of taste-based discrimination predicts that relative employment of the discriminated social group will improve if there is a decrease in the level of prejudice for the marginally discriminating employer. In this paper we experimentally test this prediction offered by Becker (1971) in the context of caste in India, with management students (potential employers in the near future) as subjects. First, we measure caste prejudice and show that awareness through a TV social program reduces implicit prejudice against the lower caste and the reduction is sustained over time. Second, we find that the treatment reduces the prejudice levels of those in the left tail of the prejudice distribution - the group which can potentially affect real outcomes as predicted by the theory. And finally, a larger share of the treatment group subjects exhibit favorable opinion about reservation in jobs for the lower caste.

Suggested Citation

  • Ritwik Banerjee & Nabanita Datta Gupta, 2014. "Awareness programs and change in taste-based caste prejudice," Economics Working Papers 2014-19, Department of Economics and Business Economics, Aarhus University.
  • Handle: RePEc:aah:aarhec:2014-19
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    3. Ralsmark, Hilda, 2017. "Media visibility and social tolerance: Evidence from USA," Working Papers in Economics 703, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Caste prejudice; taste-based discrimination; implicit association test; laboratory experiment; media influence;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C91 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Laboratory, Individual Behavior
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination

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