The effect of Affirmative Action on the reduction of employment discrimination, 1997-2015

Working paper 681
Author(s): 
Fadwah Fredericks and Derek Yu
Publication date: 
May, 2017
Classification-JEL: 

This study examines the effect of Affirmative Action on the reduction of employment discrimination by race and gender, more than 20 years since the economic transition. The empirical part of the paper employs a sample that represents the labour force (excluding informal sector workers, agricultural workers, domestic workers, self-employed and employers) aged between 15 and 65 years. The study estimates probit models to examine labour force participation, employment and occupational attainment likelihoods, followed by the Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition, using labour survey data in 1997-2015. The decomposition results show that the unexplained component of the White-African employment probability gap reveals a slight downward trend in absolute terms in 2002-2011 but in relative terms it still accounts for more than 50% of the gap. On the other hand, the unexplained component is most dominant in the male-female employment gap decomposition. These results suggest that employment discrimination against Africans and females remains serious.

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