Research Publication Title

Has Affirmative Action Affected Female or Minority Leadership of Manufacturing Firms?

Presenter Information

Justin B. SudaFollow

Major

Economics

Faculty Mentor(s)

Christopher Clark

Keywords

Affirmative Action, Regulation, Government Contracts, Executive Orders, Market Failure

Abstract

Over the last 55 years, the federal government has implemented legislation intended to increase minority and female involvement in the labor force. Despite efforts intended to fight discrimination, there are still only 21 female and 5 black CEOs among Fortune 500 firms. Affirmative Action legislation is enforced specifically on firms with government contracts. Utilizing firm level data from the National Establishment Time Series, I estimate the effect government contracts have on female or minority leadership of manufacturing firms via a linear probability model with a robust set of controls. Previous literature has found firms who have federal contracts have higher levels of female or minority representation in higher paying roles. My results have shown that affirmative action laws and regulations have led to a 1.5 percentage point increase in the likelihood of having a female in a leadership position and a 5.0 percentage point increase in minority ownership which supports the findings found in the previous literature on the subject.

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Has Affirmative Action Affected Female or Minority Leadership of Manufacturing Firms?

Over the last 55 years, the federal government has implemented legislation intended to increase minority and female involvement in the labor force. Despite efforts intended to fight discrimination, there are still only 21 female and 5 black CEOs among Fortune 500 firms. Affirmative Action legislation is enforced specifically on firms with government contracts. Utilizing firm level data from the National Establishment Time Series, I estimate the effect government contracts have on female or minority leadership of manufacturing firms via a linear probability model with a robust set of controls. Previous literature has found firms who have federal contracts have higher levels of female or minority representation in higher paying roles. My results have shown that affirmative action laws and regulations have led to a 1.5 percentage point increase in the likelihood of having a female in a leadership position and a 5.0 percentage point increase in minority ownership which supports the findings found in the previous literature on the subject.