It was clearly stated in the introduction of the seminar presentation that the study was about racial discriminatory practices in hiring workers in the private sector and not about racism, prejudices, and what not.
But some numb-nuts could not resist to give a generalisation that "Malaysian employers practise racial bigotry, study shows." However, the Bahasa Malaysia version was toned down as plain and in a matter of fact manner as "Malaysian employer prefer to take Chinese worker over Malays."
At the end of the report by the Malaysian Insider's Debra Chong here and the BM version here, one can see the agenda emerging to promote an all sweeping removal of racial discrimination. One can sense any form of affirmative action, even if it is specific for the lower economic class is dubbed as racial discrimination.
How quick these left leaning media are in spinning anything resembling counter argument, though it is merely indicative and not confirmation, to their agenda and interest from a stated fact.
And that is what we should be looking at the study as stated fact derived from the a specific study with it's limitation and appreciation for it's accuracy.
One can question the research methodology, or sampling method and perhaps make suggestion to improve it's accuracy. But give due respect to the researchers ability as academics.
However, the finding of such research should be appreciated for what it is and not to be taken out of it's academic context, especially when one consider that the researchers go to great length to clarify the limitation of the study as to avoid deriving the wrong assumptions and conclusion.
Most reports have maintained within the conclusion of the study and not to get overzealous to steal the thunder by their own opinion and agenda.
Although, there are issues that was not highlighted enough, let's read the report by The Star below:
The Star OnlineSomething more basic than the research and conclusion discussed was the number of callback to Malay applicants. See the table below we managed to pick from the presentation yesterday.
Saturday November 3, 2012
Study on hiring process
By SHAILA KOSHY
KUALA LUMPUR: Not only are job hunters selected based on their ethnicity but also which university they graduate from and what languages they speak, a study on hiring discrimination found.
The study by two local academics showed racial discrimination in the callback rates for Malay and Chinese applicants for engineering and accounting jobs in the private sector:
The findings of the study “Does race matter in getting an interview? A field experiment of hiring discrimination in Peninsular Malaysia” by Dr Lee Hwok Aun, senior lecturer at UM's Department of Development Studies and UKM research fellow Dr Muhammed Abdul Khalid were released at a public seminar yesterday.
- Between two identical resumes, the Malay one is 16.7% less likely to be called for interview;
- In engineering jobs, discrimination against Malays was highest among foreign-controlled companies, followed by Malay and Chinese-controlled companies; also
- Proficiency in Chinese gave a small edge in a callback rate of 18.8 for both races over proficiency in Malay (13.3) and English (13.2);
- Chinese and Malay private university graduates fared better but Malays had a better callback rate (6.2) if they were from Universiti Malaya (UM), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Universiti Sains Malaysia and Universiti Putra Malaysia than if from Utar (5.8) or UiTM (4.3).
One of the reasons for the study was the mutual claims of bias ethnic dominance in the civil service versus private sector prejudice against Malays and Bumiputra.
Dr Muhammed said there was no systematic empirical study as yet on the effect of race on employment prospects that controls for variation in applicant quality.
“Our study has shown that quality matters but it matters less than ethnicity.”
Dr Lee said the findings lent support to calls for an Equal Opportunity (EO) Act for the public and private sectors and an EO Commission.
Noting the study had not revealed why there was racial discrimination, he said it was a start and more work needed to be done.
“There are different dynamics in the labour market and it is not a simple case of black and white.
“We need to go to employers, to study their reasons for recruitment but it is not an easy task and we don't want to rush into this.”
For the study, they got the resumes for a degree in engineering/finance from an online employment portal, pooled the all-male applicants into race and quality and sent out 3,012 letters for 753 advertised jobs.
The companies were classified as Malay/Chinese/foreign-controlled based on the names of shareholders and directors.
The encircled set of data shows the number of callbacks the Malays applicants received. Out of 1,506 resumes sent, only 63 or 4.2% received call back.
For the below average grade applicants, they received 3.2% callback rate. But the above average grade did not fair significantly better callback at 5.2%. Even the below average grade Chinese did significantly better with 20.7% callback!
Sad isn't it when one see basic economic activities for any human has discriminatory tendency.
One frequent blog commentator, Donplaypuks cry out one human race slogan in his comments in blogs. How would he twist and divert from the real issue under question here? Heard he is launching a book.
Is this where 1Malaysia or Malaysian Malaysia will eventually lead us to?
More discussion and comment on comments to ensue later.