College Admission with Multidimensional Privileges: The Brazilian Affirmative Action Case
- American Economic Journal: Microeconomics (Forthcoming)
In 2012 Brazilian public universities were mandated to use affirmative
action policies for candidates from racial and income minorities.
We show that the policy makes the students' affirmative
action status a strategic choice, and may reject high-achieving minority
students while admitting low-achieving majority students.
Empirical data shows evidence consistent with this type of unfairness
in more than 49% of the programs. We propose a selection
criterion and an incentive-compatible mechanism that, for a wider
range of similar problems and the one in Brazil in particular, removes
any gain from strategizing over the privileges claimed and
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