In the context of the minority vulnerability thesis, this study assesses whether there are racial differences in the prevalence, determinants, and timing of downward mobility from managerial/executive and professional/technical occupational categories during the critical early career years. Findings from a panel study of income dynamics sample of men support theory: African Americans, compared to Whites, have a greater incidence of downward movement, face a route to downward movement that is less strongly predicted by traditional stratification-based causal factors, and experience mobility quickly. Analyses also reveal that racial gaps in downward mobility along lines enunciated by theory are greater in the private sector than the public sector. Implications of the findings for understanding evolving patterns of racial inequality in privileged occupations are discussed.
- African Americans
- Labor Markets
- Occupational mobility
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science