NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Splitting Blacks?: Affirmative Action and Earnings Inequality within and Across Races

Jonathan S. Leonard

NBER Working Paper No. 1327
Issued in April 1984
NBER Program(s):   LS

Critics have said that affirmative action is at best ineffective and at worst counterproductive. In particular, it has been argued that if affirmative action helps anybody, it helps only the highly educated cream of the minority population, and may perversely work to the detriment of the unskilled and uneducated. This study finds that minority males earn higher wages in sectors where affirmative action is prevalent, indicating that it has increased the demand for minority males. I also find evidence of this effect for both the lowly and highly educated, suggesting that affirmative action under the Executive Order has not contributed to the economic bifurcation of the minority community.

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w1327

Published: Leonard, Jonathan S. "Splitting Blacks?: Affirmative Action and Earnings Inequality within and Across Races," Proceddings of the Industrial Relations Research Association, 39th Annual Meeting, (Winter 1986), pp. 51-57.

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