IZA DP No. 5894: Do Employment Quotas Explain the Occupational Choices of Disadvantaged Minorities in India?
published in: International Review of Applied Economics, 2012, 26 (4), 489 - 513
This article investigates the effects of a large-scale public sector employment quota policy for disadvantaged minorities (Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes) in India on their occupational choices, as defined by skill level, during the 1980s and 1990s. We find that, first, the employment quota policy significantly affects the occupational structure of both disadvantaged minority populations. In response to the employment quotas, individuals belonging to the Scheduled Caste group are more likely to choose high-skill occupations and less likely to choose low- and middle-skill occupations, while individuals belonging to the Scheduled Tribe group are less likely to choose high-skill occupations and more likely to choose low- and middle-skill occupations. Second, the impact of the employment quotas is significantly related with an individual's years of schooling. Overall, the results indicate that the employment quota policy changes the occupational choices of individuals within the targeted populations and contributes to their improved socio-economic standing.