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Continuation of the Effects of Diversity on Retention


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Diversity and inclusion (D and I) can be a source of competitive advantage, both in the private sector and the U.S. military. Arkes et al.s 2020 work, The Effect of the Diversity on First-Ship Assignment on First-Term Retention Decisions, found that increased diversity among peers and immediate supervisors can lead to higher retention. This thesis extends on prior research on retention for minority and non-minority groups in the Navy overall, and across different geographical locations, ship classes, and Navy enlisted communities. Using a large sample on first-term enlisted Sailors reenlistment decisions made from FY1998 to FY 2017 in the surface warfare community, and a multivariate statistical analysis approach with a difference-in-difference design, this thesis finds that first-term black Sailors are more likely to reenlist relative to white Sailors in all ports, ship classes, and enlisted communities. However, the results show no evidence that female Sailors experience any different retention rates than their male counterparts. The findings provide a starting point for examining the culture of diversity and inclusion behaviors across the Navy to assess D and I behaviors, identify key inclusion metrics, and refine and implement D and I competencies on education and training in the fleet.



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