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Job seekers in one country face the worst racial discrimination…

While racial discrimination in hiring plagues many developed countries, one nation may have particular trouble bidding it adieu.

France has the highest level of hiring discrimination against non-white groups, according to a meta-analysis of data from nine countries published this week in the peer-reviewed journal Sociological Science. Researchers analyzed findings from 97 hiring field experiments that included more than 200,000 job applications.

“In every country we consider, nonwhite applicants suffer significant disadvantage in receiving callbacks for interviews compared with white natives with similar job-relevant characteristics,” the study authors wrote. “This difference is driven by race, not immigrant status.”

While white immigrants also experience discrimination compared to white natives, that difference tended to be small and not statistically significant. With respect to hiring, they added, “some countries do discriminate more than others.”

France’s aversion to measuring or discussing race and ethnicity in official capacities doesn’t seem to have paid off in reducing discrimination, the authors wrote.

“The French do not measure race or ethnicity in any official — or most unofficial capacities — which makes knowledge of racial and ethnic inequality in France very limited and makes it difficult to monitor hiring or promotion for discrimination,” study co-author Lincoln Quillian, a sociology professor at Northwestern University, said in a statement.

The US, on the other hand, requires large employers to report their racial and ethnic makeup to the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Quillian pointed out. Corporate diversity initiatives abound in the US, as do affirmative action programs.

“Discrimination ratio” The researchers determined each country’s “discrimination ratio” by calculating the ratio of the percentage of job-application callbacks white natives received versus that of minority applicants — in other words, “the number of applications that must be submitted by a minority applicant to expect an equal chance of a callback as a white applicant.” Sweden had [More]

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