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Journal of Economic Literature: Vol. 38 No. 3 (September 2000)

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Assessing Affirmative Action

Article Citation

Holzer, Harry, and David Neumark. 2000. "Assessing Affirmative Action." Journal of Economic Literature, 38(3): 483-568.

DOI: 10.1257/jel.38.3.483

Abstract

Economic research provides extensive evidence regarding discrimination against women and minorities, and some evidence on the redistributive effects of affirmative action. However, it provides much less evidence on affirmative action's impact on efficiency or performance, perhaps the key economic issue in the debate over affirmative action. This review covers all of these issues, but focuses on the efficiency/performance question, drawing on economics and other disciplines. The evidence suggests to us that affirmative action can be implemented with relatively little efficiency loss. Most importantly, the empirical case against affirmative action on the grounds of efficiency is weak at best.

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Authors

Holzer, Harry (Georgetown U)
Neumark, David (MI State U and NBER)

JEL Classifications

J78: Labor Discrimination: Public Policy
J16: Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination
J15: Economics of Minorities and Races; Non-labor Discrimination


Journal of Economic Literature


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