Research Shows Racial Discrimination Still At Play In Job Hiring

Published: Thursday, October 12, 2017 - 4:25pm
Updated: Thursday, October 12, 2017 - 4:33pm

When you send in a job application, if you meet the qualifications, you’d expect to at least get an interview. But new research shows, even at the point of hire, racial discrimination is still often at play.

Researchers at Northwestern University recently looked at just about every field experiment that’s ever been done on hiring discrimination in the U.S. to find out if we’ve made any progress in fighting discrimination at the point of hire.

And what exactly are field experiments in this case?

Those are experiments in which researchers submit fake job applications through the mail or online, and they use ethnically identifiable names that indicate whether the person applying for the job is African-American or Hispanic or white, for example. Or, they hire testers who go out and apply for jobs with fake credentials that are about equal, but one’s a minority and one’s not.

They looked at about 25 years of data like this and found that things have not gotten better in terms of hiring discrimination in America. I spoke with Lincoln Quillian, who wrote the study, more about this.

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