The Black youth employment crisis [electronic resource] /
edited by Richard B. Freeman and Harry J. Holzer.
Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1986.
viii, 469 p. : ill. ; 24 cm.
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Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1986.
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
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Includes bibliographies and indexes.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1986-11:
This is a fairly comprehensive examination of the crisis of black youth unemployment. As is the case with most social problems, there is no single cause which, if eliminated, would cure the problem. Young black males experience unemployment rates that are more than two times the rates of white youth of the same age. The factors that contribute to this situation exist on both the demand and supply sides of the labor market. The empirical studies reported in this volume indicate unemployed young black men spent more time in leisure activities unrelated to preparation for work, had less education, poorer references, and a higher reservation wage than did comparable white youth. On the demand side, employers tended to hire white youth before blacks with similar preparation, and the jobs offered were generally not very attractive. The authors of these studies relate their findings to previous research so as to afford the reader with appropriate bridges to the literature. Much of the reports focus on the methodology and analysis of the data, but it is possible for the advanced undergraduate to understand the conclusions without completely following the statistical analyses. The authors are well qualified to study these issues; most have published related work and are substantiating previous research findings by others as well as their own. An important addition for a collection on unemployment.-W.C. Bonifield, Lilly Endowment
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, November 1986
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Main Description
In recent years, the earnings of young blacks have risen substantially relative to those of young whites, but their rates of joblessness have also risen to crisis levels. The papers in this volume, drawing on the results of a groundbreaking survey conducted by the National Bureau of Economic Research, analyze the history, causes, and features of this crisis. The findings they report and conclusions they reach revise accepted explanations of black youth unemployment. The contributors identify primary determinants on both the demand and supply sides of the market and provide new information on important aspects of the problem, such as drug use, crime, economic incentives, and attitudes among the unemployed. Their studies reveal that, contrary to popular assumptions, no single factor is the predominant cause of black youth employment problems. They show, among other significant factors, that where female employment is high, black youth employment is low; that even in areas where there are many jobs, black youths get relatively few of them; that the perceived risks and rewards of crime affect decisions to work or to engage in illegal activity; and that churchgoing and aspirations affect the success of black youths in finding employment. Altogether, these papers illuminate a broad range of economic and social factors which must be understood by policymakers before the black youth employment crisis can be successfully addressed.
Table of Contents
The Black Youth Employment Crisis
The Black Youth Employment Crisis: Summary of Findings
The Nature and Pattern of Change
Black Youth Nonemployment: Duration and Job Search
Transitions between Employment and Nonemployment John Ballen and Richard B. Freeman Comment
Layoffs, Discharges, and Youth Unemployment Peter Jackson and Edward Montgomery Comment
Causes: Demand
The Spatial Mismatch Hypothesis: Are There Teenage Jobs Missing in the Ghetto? David T. Ellwood Comment
The Demographic Determinants of the Demand for Black Labor George J. Borjas Comment
Brothers of a Different Color: A Preliminary Look at Employer Treatment of White and Black Youth Jerome Culp and Bruce H. Dunson Comment
Do Better Jobs Make Better Workers? Absenteeism from Work Among Inner-City Black Youths Ronald Ferguson and Randall Filer Comment
Causes: Supply
Market Incentives for Criminal Behavior W. Kip Viscusi Comment
Who Escapes? The Relation of Churchgoing and Other Background Factors to the Socioeconomic Performance of Black Male Youths from Inner-City Poverty Tracts
The Effects of Attitudes and Aspirations on the Labor Supply of Young Men
Do Welfare Programs Affect the Schooling and Work Patterns of Young Black Men? Robert Lerman Comment
Appendix: NBER-Mathematica Survey of Inner-City Black Youth: An Analysis of the Undercount of Older Youths
List of Contributors
Author Index
Subject Index
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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