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Unequal Opportunity: Barriers to Employment in the Department of Defense Civilian Workforce

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Technical Report

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RAND Corporation Santa Monica

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The U.S. Department of Defense DoD is among the federal agencies that have fallen short in their ability to hire a representative number of civilians from particular demographic groups - one of the federal governments personnel priorities. To assess the severity of the problem and provide a foundation for improving representation, RAND Corporation researchers conducted a barrier analysis, a type of analysis that seeks to determine whether discrepancies exist in hiring among demographic groups and, if so, to uncover the causes. RAND researchers have conducted barrier analyses for many organizations, including the U.S. Department of Justice, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and civilian law enforcement organizations. Because of the important insights that this type of analysis can uncover, senior leaders in federal agencies need to understand and support these assessments. Identifying representation discrepancies is only one step a thorough assessment of the underlying causes of these discrepancies is equally important and one that agencies might neglect.

Subject Categories:

  • Personnel Management and Labor Relations
  • Government and Political Science

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