15 October 2018

Carlos III University of Madrid launches the Discrimination and Inequality Laboratory

The United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI), as part of its continuous outreach efforts about the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), shares this story related to Goal 11: Reduce inequality within and among countries, submitted by Carlos III University of Madrid, a UNAI member institution located in Spain. 

15 October 2018 - Carlos III University of Madrid (Spain), a member institution of the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI), recently launched the Discrimination and Inequality Laboratory (D-Lab) which provides the necessary infrastructure to carry out experimental field research in the area of social sciences concerning discrimination in the labour market. Precisely, according to the D-Lab, "labour-market discrimination is both unjust and inefficient". "It hurts people, it heightens inequality and it hampers economic growth", say those in charge of the D-Lab.

The D-Lab is aimed at advancing the scientific study of discrimination and social inequality by promoting rigorous empirical research and methodological innovation and is expected to soon become a centre of reference in the study of discrimination both in Europe and beyond. "The Laboratory provides training within the framework of these projects for undergraduate and graduate students and can be a springboard for the development of the early career of young researchers," notes Javier Polavieja, director of the D-Lab. 

Among the recent, current and planned research projects, issues such as segmented assimilation in the labour market, migrants’ occupational attainment across European destinations, labour-market competition, recession, and anti-immigrant attitudes are covered. One of the projects focuses on discrimination in the employment of second-generation immigrants and is being carried out simultaneously in five countries in Europe, including Spain. The project is called the Growth Equal Opportunities Migration and Markets (GEMM) project.

Another of the ongoing projects, the New Approaches to Integration Research (NewAIR) project, focuses on the analysis of the integration of international migrants in European societies. Overall, those within the D-Lab think that "if we want to combat discrimination, we need to understand how it works, and this is particularly important for the future of our increasingly diverse European societies". "The study of discrimination poses, however, major methodological challenges for social and behavioural scientists", the experts say.

The D-Lab was officially launched on 2 October 2018 with the presence of Javier Prieto, Vicerrector of Scientific Policy of the university, Stefan Houpt, Director of the Department of Social Sciences, and Luis Miller, member of the D-Lab Advisory Board.