Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics

Working Paper Series,
IFAU - Institute for Evaluation of Labour Market and Education Policy

No 2007:31: Do anonymous job application procedures level the playing field?

Olof Åslund () and Oskar Nordström Skans ()
Additional contact information
Olof Åslund: IFAU - Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation, Postal: P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden
Oskar Nordström Skans: IFAU - Institute for Labour Market Policy Evaluation, Postal: P O Box 513, SE-751 20 Uppsala, Sweden

Abstract: Anonymous application procedures (AAP) are increasingly promoted as a way to combat employment discrimination. The idea gets support from theory and experimental evidence, but virtually nothing is known about its real-life effects. We present empirical evidence building on micro data collected in the Swedish city of Gothenburg, where AAP was used in parts of the local administration. Difference-in-differences estimates, with extensive controls for qualifications, suggest that AAP increased the chances of advancing to interviews for both women and individuals of non-Western origin. Women also experienced a higher probability of being offered a job, but no such effect is found for immigrants.

Keywords: Anonymous applications; discrimination; employment

JEL-codes: J71; J78

37 pages, December 7, 2007

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