Identity and Underrepresentation: Interactions between Race and Gender
35 Pages Posted: 2 Jan 2019 Last revised: 7 Dec 2021
Date Written: October 30, 2019
Economic outcomes vary significantly across socio-demographic groups. In a model of multidimensional identity, we show how economic underrepresentation can evolve through identity-specific norms. Whereas standard approaches treat identity dimensions as independent, our analysis reveals deep connections between inequality and underrepresentation based on race, gender, and other characteristics. `Sterilized interventions' along a single identity dimension are generally impossible. Interventions that aim to reduce underrepresentation along one identity dimension can increase underrepresentation along another. We show how underrepresentation can be eliminated along every dimension, through a system of (a) self-financing subsidies or (b) role models, where interventions are connected across identity dimensions.
Keywords: identity, education, labor force participation, inequality, underrepresentation, multi-dimensional
JEL Classification: D10, D63, D71, I24, J2, Z12, Z13
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