Cultural Transmission and Discrimination

Reprint No. 2012:19

Author(s): Maria Sáez-Martí and Yves ZenouYear: 2012 Title: Journal of Urban Economics Volume (No.): 72 (2-3) Pages: 137–146
Online article (restrictions may apply)

Workers can have good or bad work habits. These traits are transmitted from one generation to the next through a learning and imitation process, which depends on parents’ investment in the trait and the social environment where children live. If a sufficiently high proportion of employers have taste-based prejudices against minority workers, we show that their prejudices are always self-fulfilled in steady state and minority workers end up having, on average, worse work habits than majority workers. This leads to a ghetto culture. Affirmative Action can improve the welfare of minorities whereas integration can be beneficial to minority workers but detrimental to workers from the majority group.

Sáez-Martí, Maria and Yves Zenou (2012), "Cultural Transmission and Discrimination". Journal of Urban Economics 72(2-3), 137–146.

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Martin Ljunge, IFN, is the author of a chapter, "Trust promotes health: addressing reverse causality by studying children of immigrants", in a new book edited by Sherman Folland and Eric Nauenberg. The cutting edge of research is presented, covering the ever-expanding social capital field.

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