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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Israel, Dina; Behrmann, Rebecca; Wulfsohn, Samantha
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2017

    This brief introduces the Building Bridges and Bonds study (B3) to practitioners and stakeholders in the fatherhood field. It describes three innovative practices for Responsible Fatherhood programs. Each innovation is practical and interactive and addresses issues important to low-income fathers. The B3 team selected them for their high potential to provide useful lessons for the field. The team then collaborated with local fatherhood programs and program developers to tailor the innovations for B3. The brief is the first in a series of publications on B3, its findings, and the lessons learned. (Author introduction)

     

    This brief introduces the Building Bridges and Bonds study (B3) to practitioners and stakeholders in the fatherhood field. It describes three innovative practices for Responsible Fatherhood programs. Each innovation is practical and interactive and addresses issues important to low-income fathers. The B3 team selected them for their high potential to provide useful lessons for the field. The team then collaborated with local fatherhood programs and program developers to tailor the innovations for B3. The brief is the first in a series of publications on B3, its findings, and the lessons learned. (Author introduction)

     

  • Individual Author: Hendra, Richard ; Greenberg, David H.; Hamilton, Gayle; Oppenheim, Ari; Pennington, Alexandra; Schaberg, Kelsey; Tessler, Betsy L.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2016

    This report summarizes the two-year findings of a rigorous random assignment evaluation of the WorkAdvance model, a sectoral training and advancement initiative. Launched in 2011, WorkAdvance goes beyond the previous generation of employment programs by introducing demand-driven skills training and a focus on jobs that have career pathways. The model is heavily influenced by the positive findings from the Sectoral Employment Impact Study (SEIS) completed in 2010. A major component of the WorkAdvance model, in common with the programs studied in the SEIS, is formal training offering industry-recognized certifications, reflecting the hypothesis that skills acquisition is necessary for advancement. The model also requires providers to be far more employer-facing than traditional training programs, taking into account multiple employers’ changing skill requirements, employee assessment practices, and personnel needs. This report presents the implementation, cost, participation, and two-year economic impacts of WorkAdvance. The economic results are based on unemployment insurance...

    This report summarizes the two-year findings of a rigorous random assignment evaluation of the WorkAdvance model, a sectoral training and advancement initiative. Launched in 2011, WorkAdvance goes beyond the previous generation of employment programs by introducing demand-driven skills training and a focus on jobs that have career pathways. The model is heavily influenced by the positive findings from the Sectoral Employment Impact Study (SEIS) completed in 2010. A major component of the WorkAdvance model, in common with the programs studied in the SEIS, is formal training offering industry-recognized certifications, reflecting the hypothesis that skills acquisition is necessary for advancement. The model also requires providers to be far more employer-facing than traditional training programs, taking into account multiple employers’ changing skill requirements, employee assessment practices, and personnel needs. This report presents the implementation, cost, participation, and two-year economic impacts of WorkAdvance. The economic results are based on unemployment insurance earnings records and a second-year follow-up survey.

    The WorkAdvance program operations and evaluation are funded through the federal Social Innovation Fund (SIF), a public-private partnership administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service. This SIF project is led by the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City and the NYC Center for Economic Opportunity in collaboration with MDRC.

    Key Findings

    • All providers translated the WorkAdvance model into a set of concrete services, but it took time — more than a year for some components and providers — and a substantial amount of technical assistance and support. As a result, at some sites, later study enrollees were more likely than earlier ones to experience a fully implemented and “mature” WorkAdvance program.
    • Overall, WorkAdvance resulted in very large increases in participation in every category of services, as well as in training completion and credential acquisition, compared with what would have happened in the absence of the program. Expenditures for the operation of WorkAdvance fell between $5,200 and $6,700 per participant at the four providers delivering the program.
    • WorkAdvance providers increased earnings, with variation in results that closely matched the providers’ experience in running sector-based programs and the extent to which the services they offered were demand driven. The most experienced sectoral provider, Per Scholas, had large and consistent impacts on both primary and secondary outcomes. Madison Strategies Group and Towards Employment, providers new to sectoral training, had promising but less consistent results that grew stronger for later enrollees. One provider, St. Nicks Alliance, did not produce positive impacts. The results did not differ dramatically across subgroups, though encouragingly, WorkAdvance was able to increase earnings among the long-term unemployed.

    The evaluation as a whole provides important information for workforce development providers interested in pursuing a sector strategy. The analysis considers the role played by providers’ sector-specific training and preparation and the role played by the nature of the sectors themselves. Future priorities that emerge from the results are (1) understanding how to help the more disadvantaged access the programs and (2) learning how to build service capacity, given how complex the model is to run. (Author abstract)

     

  • Individual Author: Darby, Derrick; Saatcioglu, Argun
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2015

    Both neoliberals and liberals call for mitigating inequality of educational opportunity stemming from circumstances beyond an individual’s control. In this article, we challenge the wisdom of making equality of opportunity hinge on emphasizing the distinction rather than the relationship between choices and circumstances. We utilize an empirical analysis focusing on the extent to which certain circumstances beyond the control of low-income urban Black adults (e.g. poverty and community instability) limit their eventual chances for maintaining traditional two-parent households, which in turn limits their capacity to make effective choices instrumental in improving the educational prospects of their children. We conclude from this that collectively bearing the burden of attending to differences in the quality of circumstances – in which these voluntary choices are made by poor urban Black parents – is something that we owe to each other whether we are neoliberals or liberals if we share a common normative commitment to equality of opportunity. (author abstract)

    Both neoliberals and liberals call for mitigating inequality of educational opportunity stemming from circumstances beyond an individual’s control. In this article, we challenge the wisdom of making equality of opportunity hinge on emphasizing the distinction rather than the relationship between choices and circumstances. We utilize an empirical analysis focusing on the extent to which certain circumstances beyond the control of low-income urban Black adults (e.g. poverty and community instability) limit their eventual chances for maintaining traditional two-parent households, which in turn limits their capacity to make effective choices instrumental in improving the educational prospects of their children. We conclude from this that collectively bearing the burden of attending to differences in the quality of circumstances – in which these voluntary choices are made by poor urban Black parents – is something that we owe to each other whether we are neoliberals or liberals if we share a common normative commitment to equality of opportunity. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Edin, Kathryn; Shaefer, H. Luke
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 2015

    Jessica Compton’s family of four would have no income if she didn’t donate plasma twice a week at her local donation center in Tennessee. Modonna Harris and her teenage daughter Brianna, in Chicago, have gone for days with nothing to eat other than spoiled milk.

    After two decades of groundbreaking research on American poverty, Kathryn Edin noticed something she hadn’t seen before — households surviving on virtually no cash income. Edin, whose deep examination of her subjects’ lives has “turned sociology upside down” (Mother Jones), teamed with Luke Shaefer, an expert on surveys of the incomes of the poor. The two made a surprising discovery: the number of American families living on $2.00 per person, per day, has skyrocketed to one and a half million American households, including about three million children. 

    But the fuller story remained to be told. Where do these families live? How did they get so desperately poor? What do they do to survive? In search of answers, Edin and Shaefer traveled across the country to speak with families living in this extreme poverty...

    Jessica Compton’s family of four would have no income if she didn’t donate plasma twice a week at her local donation center in Tennessee. Modonna Harris and her teenage daughter Brianna, in Chicago, have gone for days with nothing to eat other than spoiled milk.

    After two decades of groundbreaking research on American poverty, Kathryn Edin noticed something she hadn’t seen before — households surviving on virtually no cash income. Edin, whose deep examination of her subjects’ lives has “turned sociology upside down” (Mother Jones), teamed with Luke Shaefer, an expert on surveys of the incomes of the poor. The two made a surprising discovery: the number of American families living on $2.00 per person, per day, has skyrocketed to one and a half million American households, including about three million children. 

    But the fuller story remained to be told. Where do these families live? How did they get so desperately poor? What do they do to survive? In search of answers, Edin and Shaefer traveled across the country to speak with families living in this extreme poverty. Through the book’s many compelling profiles, moving and startling answers emerge: a low-wage labor market that increasingly fails to deliver a living wage, and a growing but hidden landscape of survival strategies among America’s extreme poor. Not just a powerful exposé, $2.00 a Day delivers new evidence and new ideas to our national debate on income inequality. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hendra, Rick
    Reference Type: Conference Paper
    Year: 2015

    This powerpoint presentation from the 2015 NAWRS conference describes an implementation study of an employment retention and advancement program based in three cities.

    This powerpoint presentation from the 2015 NAWRS conference describes an implementation study of an employment retention and advancement program based in three cities.

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