The Organizational Bases of Racial Discrimination


Thursday, February 27, 2020, 11:45am to 1:00pm


Ellwood Democracy Lab, Rubenstein 414

David Pedulla, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology, Stanford University.

A significant body of social science research provides compelling evidence that hiring discrimination persists against African Americans. Yet, scholarship in this area has left open important questions about the organizational features that may exacerbate or mitigate discrimination at the hiring interface. In this talk, which draws on collaborative research, David Pedulla theoretically develops an argument about how organizational policies, practices, and characteristics – levels of formalization and transparency, social integration efforts, and organizational demography, for example – shape racial discrimination in hiring. To gain empirical traction on these issues, he draws on an original dataset that matches direct measures of hiring discrimination from a large-scale audit study with separate detailed survey data about the characteristics of the organizations that were part of the audit study. This unique data structure provides the ability to open up the “black box” of hiring discrimination and probe the organizational-level forces that are involved in shaping racial discrimination.