taste-based discrimination

Kerwin Charles, J. Guryan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary


Economists typically account for differences in economic outcomes between ethnic groups with explanations having to do with differences in skill, explanations emphasizing informational problems associated with accurately assessing skill, as in statistical discrimination models, or explanations that rely on the presence of prejudice, the key element of taste-based discrimination models. This article defines taste-based discrimination and briefly outlines the economics of associated models. It discusses empirical implications of these models, and reviews empirical tests from the literature. It speculates about possible avenues for future research likely to enrich the insights forthcoming from the standard taste-based model. Although this article focuses on discrimination arising from racial prejudice, taste-based discrimination subsumes negative preferences towards groups of individuals of many alternative types, including different age, gender or religious groups.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe New Palgrave Dictionary of Economics
EditorsSteven N. Durlauf, Lawrence E. Blume
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
ISBN (Print)978-0333786765
StatePublished - 2009


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