Can the Government Deter Discrimination? Evidence from a Randomized Intervention in New York City

  title={Can the Government Deter Discrimination? Evidence from a Randomized Intervention in New York City},
  author={Albert H. Fang and Andrew Markus Guess and Macartan Humphreys},
  journal={The Journal of Politics},
  pages={127 - 141}
Racial discrimination persists despite established antidiscrimination laws. A common government strategy to deter discrimination is to publicize the law and communicate potential penalties for violations. We study this strategy by coupling an audit experiment with a randomized intervention involving nearly 700 landlords in New York City and report the first causal estimates of the effect on rental discrimination against blacks and Hispanics of a targeted government messaging campaign. We… 

Political Solutions to Discriminatory Behavior

  • T. Guul
  • Political Science
    American Political Science Review
  • 2022
Discriminatory treatment of minorities by public authorities remains a serious challenge and breaks with the central principles of impartiality. However, little research examines how discrimination

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Audit experiments are used to measure discrimination in a large number of domains (Employment: Bertrand et al. ( 2004 ); Legislator responsiveness: Butler et al. ( 2011 ); Housing: Fang et al. ( 2018



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While experimental studies of local election officials have found evidence of racial discrimination, we know little about whether these biases manifest in bureaucracies that provide access to

Discrimination in a Low-Wage Labor Market

A field experiment in the low-wage labor market of New York City recruiting white, black, and Latino job applicants who were matched on demographic characteristics and interpersonal skills shows that black applicants were half as likely as equally qualified whites to receive a callback or job offer.

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Do street-level bureaucrats discriminate in the services they provide to constituents? We use a field experiment to measure differential information provision about voting by local election

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Empirical studies have shown that discrimination litigants face difficult odds. Indeed, less than 5% of all discrimination plaintiffs achieve any form of litigated relief. These odds are far worse

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Researchers studying discrimination and bias frequently conduct experiments that use racially distinctive names to signal race. The ability of these experiments to speak to racial discrimination

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The authors argue that racial discrimination in housing markets need not involve personal contact between agents and renters. Research indicates that Americans can infer race from speech patterns


Particularly in developing countries, there is a gap between written law and behavior. Comparative research emphasizes that laws go unenforced due to resource constraints or inadequate control of the

The Sociology of Discrimination: Racial Discrimination in Employment, Housing, Credit, and Consumer Markets.

This discussion seeks to orient readers to some of the key debates in the study of discrimination and to provide a roadmap for those interested in building upon this long and important line of research.