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Race and Marriage in the Labor Market: A Discrimination Correspondence Study in a Developing Country

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  • Arceo-Gomez, Eva O.
  • Campos-Vázquez, Raymundo M.

Abstract

In Mexico, as in most Latin American countries with indigenous populations, it is commonly believed that European phenotypes are preferred to mestizo or indigenous phenotypes. However, it is hard to test for such racial biases in the labor market using official statistics since race can only be inferred from native language. Moreover, employers may think that married females have lower productivity, and hence they may be more reluctant to hire them. We are interested in testing both hypotheses through a field experiment in the labor market. The experiment consisted on sending fictitious curriculums (CVs) responding to job advertisements with randomized information of the applicants. The CVs included photographs representing three distinct phenotypes: Caucasian, mestizo and indigenous. We also randomly vary marital status across gender and phenotype. Hence, our test consists on finding whether there are significant differences in the callback rates. We find that females have 40 percent more callbacks than males. We also find that indigenous looking females are discriminated against, but the effect is not present for males. Interestingly, married females are penalized in the labor market and this penalty is higher for indigenous-looking women. We did not find an effect of marital status on males.

Suggested Citation

  • Arceo-Gomez, Eva O. & Campos-Vázquez, Raymundo M., 2013. "Race and Marriage in the Labor Market: A Discrimination Correspondence Study in a Developing Country," MPRA Paper 48000, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:48000
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Chowdhury, Shyamal & Ooi, Evarn & Slonim, Robert, 2017. "Racial discrimination and white first name adoption: a field experiment in the Australian labour market," Working Papers 2017-15, University of Sydney, School of Economics.
    2. Gaulke, Amanda & Cassidy, Hugh & Namingit, Sheryll, 2019. "The effect of post-baccalaureate business certificates on job search: Results from a correspondence study," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(C).
    3. Emmanuel Duguet & Yannick l'Horty & Rémi Le Gall & Pascale Petit, 2018. "How does labour market history influence the access to hiring interviews?," Post-Print hal-01827450, HAL.
    4. Piopiunik, Marc & Schwerdt, Guido & Simon, Lisa & Woessmann, Ludger, 2020. "Skills, signals, and employability: An experimental investigation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 123(C).
    5. Javier Cano-Urbina & Patrick L. Mason, 2016. "Acculturation and the labor market in Mexico," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 5(1), pages 1-29, December.
    6. Patrick Kline & Christopher Walters, 2019. "Audits as Evidence: Experiments, Ensembles, and Enforcement," Papers 1907.06622, arXiv.org, revised Jul 2019.
    7. Asali, Muhammad & Pignatti, Norberto & Skhirtladze, Sophiko, 2018. "Employment discrimination in a former Soviet Union Republic: Evidence from a field experiment," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(4), pages 1294-1309.
    8. Thijssen, Lex & Lancee, Bram & Veit, Susanne & Yemane, Ruta, 2021. "Discrimination against Turkish minorities in Germany and the Netherlands: field experimental evidence on the effect of diagnostic information on labour market outcomes," EconStor Open Access Articles and Book Chapters, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics, pages 1222-1239.
    9. Asali, Muhammad & Pignatti, Norberto & Skhirtladze, Sophiko, 2017. "Employment Discrimination in a Former Soviet Union Republic: Evidence from a Field Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 11056, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Campos Vázquez, Raymundo M. & Medina Cortina, Eduardo M., 2018. "Identidad social y estereotipos por color de piel. Aspiraciones y desempeño en jóvenes mexicanos," El Trimestre Económico, Fondo de Cultura Económica, vol. 0(337), pages .53-79, enero-mar.
    11. Monroy-Gómez-Franco, Luis & Vélez-Grajales, Roberto & Yalonetzky, Gastón, 2021. "Layers of inequality: Unequal opportunities and skin colour in Mexico," MPRA Paper 106605, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    12. Cartwright, Edward & Wooders, Myrna, 2020. "Own experience bias in evaluating the efforts of others," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 173(C), pages 164-178.
    13. Gaddis, S. Michael, 2018. "An Introduction to Audit Studies in the Social Sciences," SocArXiv e5hfc, Center for Open Science.
    14. Yusuke Jinnai, 2016. "Do Job Applicants also Discriminate Potential Employers? Evidence from the World's Largest Online Labor Market," Working Papers EMS_2016_03, Research Institute, International University of Japan.
    15. Zschirnt, Eva & Ruedin, Didier, 2016. "Ethnic discrimination in hiring decisions: A meta-analysis of correspondence tests 1990–2015," EconStor Preprints 142176, ZBW - Leibniz Information Centre for Economics.
    16. Chowdhury, Shyamal & Ooi, Evarn & Slonim, Robert, 2020. "Racial Discrimination and White First Name Adoption: Evidence from a Correspondence Study in the Australian Labour Market," IZA Discussion Papers 13208, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    17. Nuñez, Roy, 2020. "Obesity and labor market in Peru," MPRA Paper 105621, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    18. Eva O. Arceo-Gómez & Raymundo M. Campos-Vázquez, 2015. "How Does Explicit Discrimination in Job Ads Interact with Discrimination in Callbacks? Evidence form a Correspondence Study in Mexico City," Working papers DTE 593, CIDE, División de Economía.
    19. repec:cep:cverdp:012 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Campos-Vazquez, Raymundo M. & Gonzalez, Eva, 2020. "Obesity and hiring discrimination," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 37(C).
    21. Raymundo M. Campos-Vazquez & Roy Nuñez, 2019. "Obesity and labor market outcomes in Mexico/Obesidad y el mercado de trabajo en México," Estudios Económicos, El Colegio de México, Centro de Estudios Económicos, vol. 34(2), pages 159-196.
    22. Weichselbaumer, Doris & Schuster, Julia, 2021. "The Effect of Photos and a Local-Sounding Name on Discrimination against Ethnic Minorities in Austria," IZA Discussion Papers 14495, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    23. Arceo-Gomez, Eva O. & Campos-Vazquez, Raymundo M., 2019. "Gender stereotypes: The case of MisProfesores.com in Mexico," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 55-65.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Discrimination; Gender; Race; Marriage; Labor market; Mexico; Hiring; Correspondence study.;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure
    • J15 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Minorities, Races, Indigenous Peoples, and Immigrants; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
    • J7 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination
    • J71 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Discrimination - - - Hiring and Firing
    • J83 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Labor Standards - - - Workers' Rights
    • O54 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Latin America; Caribbean

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