jobs, hiring and other such stuff

Mon, 6 Jun 1994 14:44:40 EST

As I mentioned a few days ago . . . the North Central Sociological
Association is devoting its next annual meetings to the topic of
downsizing and multiculturalism (or, . . . what do we do with all those
Europenas when the market is shrinking?")

As a result of those meetings, and the recent discussion of jobs, hiring
discrimination etc . . . and since there are strong feelings on all sides
of the issue . . . I choose to try to collect data to write a paper for
those meetings . . . and, perhaps if employment appears . . . to volunteer
to chair and organize a session at them.

Thus, in addition to my inquiry to the list to post knowledge of hiring
practices, without giving details (to informally examine from informants
the dearth or widespread nature of current practices) . . . I would like
to have confidential information from anyone who has experienced hiring
discrimination, or has made a choice based on the fear of hiring
discrimination. If you decide to participate in data gathering as an
informant . . . please post your acknowledgement and preliminary
information to me under the send-heading of CONFIDENTIAL. All such information
will be treated in full accord with the standard of professional ethics of
the AAA and ASA.

The topics that I want to address for that meeting and paper are: 1) the
prevalance of disciminatory hiring practices against anyone . . . with
sub-categories gender, racial, handicap, age, class or other identities of
the applicant in relationship to the hiring institutions; 2) the emotional
effect that such practices have on applicants' psychological state; 3) the
influence of such practices on career and future employment choices; 4) the
financial effect of such practices on the applicant; and 5) if such practices
have in any way inhibited or changed or stopped the production of academic
work and ideas on the part of the applicant.

I am especially interested in the situation as it relates to white males of
all age brackets, but want to obtain references to and personal information
from all gender and ethnic identities. There is absolutely no way that I
could produce a professionally unbiased study without information from all
sides of the issue, and I do want this to be as unbiased as the theoretical
assumptions behind it will allow (acknowledging the POMO point that everything
is biased).

I would also like to hear from established administration, facutly or
official representatives of special interest groups with arguments and
positions (and arguments for those positions) justifying the implementation
of preferential hiring of any kind: quotas, affirmative action preferences,
administrative pressures, moral arguments of preferential justification and
so forth.

I want to remind you that this work, informant identities and institutional
affiliations (etc.) WILL remain totally confidential and WILL be handled in
accord with the highest level of professional ethics regarding informants or
other sensitive information.

I am restricting this study to the National boundaries of the United States,
but will be happy to hear from anyone anywhere with information that relates
to those boundaries.

No previous private post, nor Anthro-L post . . . nor information included
in those posts will be included in this study. Informants' information will
only be included if posted under the heading of CONFIDENTIAL after June 5,

If you elect to respond as an informant . . . please post a brief confidential
post to me with the nature of your information, and I will recontact you on
e-mail with specific questions.

John O'Brien

Post Script
As writing, it occurs to me that the following needs to be added. I
acknowledge a strong personal bias in this study, and will make every effort
to counteract that bias by attempting to implement a value free study regard-
less of personal feelings. I also would like professional comments on the
methodology, using e-mail key informants as a data source. If you would like
to comment on methodology, and not as an informant, please post under the
heading of METHODOLOGY and advise if you post can be forwarded to the open
list as a methods commentary.
Please feel free to forward my request for key informants to any other
list, or to forward it verbally or in written form to collegues or other
interested parties in departments or in applied positions.
Please recall that I am most interested in the topics of emotions,
construction of identities, and economic-political effects of preferential
The information will be analyzed utilizing what I term construct realist
theory, and for all individuals reading this list . . . keep in mind that I
am perfectly willing to entertain any number of hypothesis initially. Those
would include, among others: 1) discrimination against white males is a `myth'
2) discrimination against white males is now institutionalized in American
Society and especially academic society.
My appologies for the spelling in hypothesis (which should be hypotheses).
I do not have an on line editor to work with.
The conclusions reached in this paper, as well as the direction it takes,
will depend totally upon responses. Sorry about the spelling of appologies
as well (which should be apologies). If I do not have responses from e-mail
informants, the paper will not be written.