Eindhoven discriminates in application procedures

Photo credit: Studio040

Since 2019, the Municipality of Eindhoven has been increasingly discriminating during application procedures on the basis of origin and age. Discrimination takes place during the first round of selection, based on CVs and letters of application.

In 2019, discrimination during the application procedure had been eliminated. However, unequal treatment was back in 2022. This is what the city council reports in response to a study by Tilburg University into the effect of the diversity policy of the municipality.

The diversity policy in the municipal organization has also not improved in other areas. For example, people with a migration background are still strongly underrepresented in the organisation. Moreover, the municipality sees that opportunities to combat this under-representation have not been used. Also, just like in 2019, female applicants still have an advantage.


There is also “persistent unequal treatment” in hiring overqualified staff based on age and gender, the study found. This works to the detriment of young people and women and results in unequal access to higher positions.

Further research

Eindhoven will investigate why personality traits have started to play a role again in the selection of letters, according to the municipality. To improve that situation, the municipality of Eindhoven uses courses from the College of Human Rights.

A plan will also be presented in the second quarter in which the municipality wants to explain how the diversity policy can be better implemented. The diversity policy will also become a permanent subject in the induction program for new managers, the Municipal Executive reports.

One upside is that there are more applicants with a background from a non-Western country than before, and the influx of under-qualified people with a non-Western background has stopped.


Employees with a non-Western background are also better spread over the various job levels in the organizations and applicants and employees are representative of the Eindhoven working population. In addition, employees of different origins and ages relatively often feel accepted and recognised, according to research by Tilburg University.


Source: Studio040

For Eindhoven News: Lila Mehrez

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