PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to study the association between firm size and hiring discrimination against women, ethnic minorities and older job candidates.Design/methodology/approachThe authors merge field experimental measures on unequal treatment with firm-level data. The resulting data enable the authors to assess whether discrimination varies by indicators of firm size, keeping other firm characteristics constant.FindingsIn contrast with the theoretical expectations, the authors find no evidence for an association between firm size and hiring discrimination. On the other hand, the authors do find suggestive evidence for hiring discrimination being lower in respect of public or non-profit firms (compared to commercial firms).Social implicationsTo effectively combat hiring discrimination, one needs to understand its driving factors. In other words, to design adequate policy actions, targeted to the right employers in the right way, one has to gain insight into when individuals are discriminated in particular, i.e. into the moderators of labour market discrimination. In this study, the authors focus on firm size as a moderator of hiring discrimination.Originality/valueFormer contributions investigated this association within the context of ethnic discrimination only and included hardly any controls for other firm-level drivers of discrimination. The authors are the first to study the heterogeneity in discrimination by firm size with respect to multiple discrimination grounds and control for additional firm characteristics.
International Journal of Manpower – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jul 2, 2018
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