Stewart, Lathonia Denise; Perlow, Richard
December 2001
Journal of Business & Psychology;Winter2001, Vol. 16 Issue 2, p259
Academic Journal
It is important to understand why biased employee selection occurs in the workplace. We examined applicant race, job status, and the evaluator's attitudes toward blacks as possible predictors of unfair selection decisions. After completing an attitude toward blacks scale, one hundred and eighty-one people evaluated the qualifications of either a black or white applicant for either a high or low status job. Results showed no differences in the hiring decision. However, evaluators with more negative attitudes toward blacks reported greater confidence in their decision to hire the black applicant than the white applicant for the low status job compared to the confidence of evaluators with more positive attitudes. They also reported greater confidence in their decision to hire the white applicant than the black applicant for the high status job as compared to evaluators with more positive attitudes towards blacks. We observed the opposite results for less biased individuals. Evaluator ratings do not explain these findings. These data suggest that unfair discrimination may operate in subtle ways.


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