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Inclusive Recruitment? Hiring Discrimination against Older Workers

Author

Listed:
  • Drydakis, Nick

    () (Anglia Ruskin University)

  • MacDonald, Peter

    () (Anglia Ruskin University)

  • Bozani, Vasiliki

    () (University of Cyprus)

  • Chiotis, Vangelis

    (Anglia Ruskin University)

Abstract

Addressing population ageing requires a rise in the activity rates of older workers. In this study, a field experiment for the period 2013-2015 in the UK, suggests that age discrimination persists at alarming levels. It shows that when two applicants engage in an identical job search, the older applicant would gain fewer invitations for interviews regardless of her/his experience or superiority for the appointment. The results also suggest that older applicants face higher occupational access constraints for blue-collar jobs than white-collar/pink-collar jobs, and that women face greater age discrimination than men. Worryingly, the outcomes suggest that older applicants gain poorer access to vacancies than younger applicants irrespective of written commitments to equal opportunities. The design of the study suggests that discrimination results from distaste for older applicants, which has not been eliminated by the introduction of anti-discrimination legislation. Eliminating ageism in recruitment requires organizations to adopt more inclusive HR policies at the earliest stages of the recruitment process. Social dialogue has a crucial role to play in shaping inclusive and discrimination free recruitment policies such that shared values and beliefs are not age-discriminatory but rather recognize the strengths and potential of workers from different age groups.

Suggested Citation

  • Drydakis, Nick & MacDonald, Peter & Bozani, Vasiliki & Chiotis, Vangelis, 2017. "Inclusive Recruitment? Hiring Discrimination against Older Workers," IZA Discussion Papers 10957, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp10957
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. P. A. Riach & J. Rich, 2002. "Field Experiments of Discrimination in the Market Place," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 112(483), pages 480-518, November.
    2. Peter A. Riach & Judith Rich, 2010. "An Experimental Investigation of Age Discrimination in the English Labor Market," Annals of Economics and Statistics, GENES, issue 99-100, pages 169-185.
    3. Joanna N. Lahey, 2008. "Age, Women, and Hiring: An Experimental Study," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 43(1).
    4. Drydakis, Nick, 2009. "Sexual orientation discrimination in the labour market," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 364-372, August.
    5. David Neumark & Ian Burn & Patrick Button, 2015. "Is It Harder for Older Workers to Find Jobs? New and Improved Evidence from a Field Experiment," NBER Working Papers 21669, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Riach, Peter A. & Rich, Judy, 2007. "An Experimental Investigation of Age Discrimination in the Spanish Labour Market," IZA Discussion Papers 2654, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    access to occupations; wages; ageism; women; discrimination;

    JEL classification:

    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments
    • C9 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments
    • J14 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of the Elderly; Economics of the Handicapped; Non-Labor Market Discrimination
    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics

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