Mentoring and the Dynamics of Affirmative Action
55 Pages Posted: 17 Nov 2017 Last revised: 10 Dec 2019
Date Written: November 5, 2019
We study the dynamics of workforce participation when same-group mentoring lowers education costs. Our continuous-time overlapping-generations model considers a majority and a minority group of identically distributed talent. Under sufficiently decreasing returns to mentoring, and in high-skill sectors, a patient social planner enforces an over-representation of minority workers relative to their population share. Such a composition never arises endogenously as a steady state, and thus requires persistent government intervention. As such, the surplus-maximizing policy goes beyond fairness objectives and qualitatively differs from leading models of workforce imbalance, with implications for the ``glass ceiling effect'' and the design of affirmative action.
Keywords: Affirmative Action, Continuous Time Overlapping Generations, Human Capital, Labor Participation, Employment Insecurity, Mentoring, Talent
JEL Classification: D62, E24, I2, J15, J16, J24
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