Économie et Statistique n° 447 - 2011 Perceived Inflation - The Choice between Employment and Inactivity for Mothers of Young Children - Home insurance in Overseas Deparments - Place-of-residence Effects on Access to Employment
Place-of-residence effects on access to employment: a discrimination test among skilled youth
This article describes an experimental measurement of place-of-residence effects on access to employment among skilled youth. We seek not only to measure an effect with all other things being equal, but also to verify whether the effect differs for certain population categories. We analyzed discrimination in hiring against young people in the Paris region through three effects: reputation of place of residence, gender, and origin (French or North African). The data were obtained with a testing protocol: 3,684 applications were sent in reply to 307 vacancies in a skilled occupation faced with a supply shortage: information-technology staff with a degree equal to the baccalauréat (high-school leaving exam) plus five years of higher education (“Bac+5”). In theory, discrimination in this category should be minimal. To assess geographic discrimination, we located the fictitious applicants in three towns of the Val-d'Oise: Enghien-les-Bains, Sarcelles, and Villiers-le-Bel. By and large, a North African origin does not appear to have a discriminatory effect for men. It is, however, a greater handicap for applicants living in Sarcelles, where both men and women are less likely to obtain a job interview (for an open-ended contract for men, and for all job categories for women). Geographic discrimination is confined to women. Residing in a disadvantaged locality (Villiers-le-Bel or Sarcelles) rather than in a well-to-do town (Enghien-les-Bains) diminishes the likelihood of making it to the job interview. Moreover, applicants of French origin residing in Villiers-le-Bel are more discriminated against that those living in Sarcelles. The former live in a town that experienced urban riots in 2007 widely covered in the media, whereas Sarcelles, while also disadvantaged, receives less media attention.