The Effect of Multiculturalism and Colour Blindness on Individual and Team Selection in the Workplace




Gnanakumaran, Vishi

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University of Guelph


The purpose of this thesis was to investigate the effect of exposure to multicultural and colour blind ideologies on discrimination in individual selection decisions, and diversity in team selection decisions. One hundred and fourteen participants role played a hiring manager in a large government organization, and were assigned to a multicultural, colour blind or control condition. Participants rated either an Arab Muslim or a White Canadian job applicant, and then selected a team to form a task force from a diverse pool of employees. However, the diversity ideology espoused by the organization did not have an effect on the individual or team selection decisions that participants made, or on attitudes towards diversity issues in the workplace. Possible explanations for non-significant results and implications for practice are discussed.



workplace discrimination, diversity, colour blindness, multiculturalism, accommodation