Sikdar, S, Bag, P and Saha, B (2020) Prejudice, Bias and Identity Neutral Policy. Social Choice and Welfare. ISSN 0176-1714

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How does identity blind hiring, as opposed to sighted hiring, influence matching between high ability candidates and high value jobs? Job seekers might face constraints in signaling their abilities for lack of wealth and being denied education. Adding to this problem are the prejudices and biases of employers as some believe White (advantaged) applicants, on average with more wealth, contain a greater proportion of high abilities compared to Black (disadvantaged) applicants. Given such distorted beliefs, jobs/skills matching may improve or worsen under blind hiring, and there may co-exist unfilled vacancies and unemployment. The positive outcome, from job seekers’ point of view, is when employers collectively view the blind pool of the uneducated applicants to have enough high ability candidates worth risking filling up their high value slots rather than leaving the positions vacant. The negative outcome occurs when the blind pool is perceived to contain a low percentage of high ability candidates, so the advantaged high ability candidates with no wealth remain unemployed while they would have been assigned to high value jobs under sighted hiring. Finally, if education is more than a mere signal and enhances productivity in the low value jobs, unemployment will be less. But there is also a possibility that the low ability workers of the employers-favored advantaged group choose not to educate themselves even when they have the necessary wealth. Identity neutral hiring may or may not eliminate such perverse incentives.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: The final version of this paper with all relevant information needed can be found at;
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
J Political Science > J General legislative and executive papers
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Keele Business School
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 06 Aug 2020 10:10
Last Modified: 03 Aug 2021 01:30

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