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SA Journal of Industrial Psychology

On-line version ISSN 2071-0768

Abstract

THERON, Callie. The diversity-validity dilemma: in search of minimum adverse impact and maximum utility. SA j. ind. Psychol. [online]. 2009, vol.35, n.1, pp. 183-195. ISSN 2071-0768.

Selection from diverse groups of applicants poses the formidable challenge of developing valid selection procedures that simultaneously add value, do not discriminate unfairly and which minimise adverse impact. Valid selection procedures used in a fair, non-discriminatory manner that optimises utility, however, very often result in adverse impact against members of protected groups. More often than not, the assessment techniques used for selection are blamed for this. The conventional interpretation of adverse impact results in an erroneous diagnosis of the fundamental causes of the under-representation of protected group members and, consequently, in an inappropriate treatment of the problem.

Keywords : personnel selection; adverse impact; unfair discrimination; employment equity; diversity.

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