According to a study, “Why do some employers prefer to interview Matthew, but not Samir?”, English-speaking employers in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver – who should have an awareness of the diversity of talent in the work force, given their city’s multicultural populations – are about 40 per cent more likely to choose to interview a job applicant with an English-sounding name than someone with an ethnic name, even if both candidates have identical education, skills and work histories.
That’s from the Globe and Mail. You can read the rest of the story here.
As I read this, I thought about the academic job market for philosophers. It would be hard to conduct a study of this sort with academic cvs and philosophy job postings but I’d be very curious about the results. It also struck me that this study focuses on large ethnically diverse urban centres. I shudder to think what the results would have been like in small town rural Ontario, on the east coast, or on the prairies.
The story does include some suggestions: For applicants, submitting a video resume or putting one’s name in a smaller font and specifically providing evidence of language and communication skills. For employers, leaving names off cvs entirely and evaluating them without access to the name of the applicant.