Chapter

Measuring Discrimination

Ashwani Deshpande

in The Grammar of Caste

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780198072034
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199081028 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198072034.003.0005
Measuring Discrimination

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This chapter discusses how economists define discrimination and how it can be measured in the labour market. The primary method is called the ‘decomposition method’, which focuses on the gap in average wages/earnings between social groups. Through an econometric technique, the researcher decomposes the wage gap between groups in order to determine how much of the gap is explained by differential group characteristics or endowments and how much is due to discrimination. The chapter also discusses the critiques of this method and examines additional new techniques, such as correspondence and audit studies, which are being used to gauge the extent of discriminatory attitudes and their manifestations during economic interactions.

Keywords: discrimination; labour market; decomposition method; wage gap; non-discriminatory decomposition; social groups; correspondence studies; audit studies; racial profiling; segragation

Chapter.  12781 words. 

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth

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