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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: Busso, Matias; Gregory, Jesse; Kline, Patrick
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2013

    This article empirically assesses the incidence and efficiency of Round 1 of the federal urban Empowerment Zone (EZ) program using confidential microdata from the Decennial Census and the Longitudinal Business Database. Using rejected and future applicants to the EZ program as controls, we find that EZ designation substantially increased employment in zone neighborhoods and generated wage increases for local workers without corresponding increases in population or the local cost of living. The results suggest the efficiency costs of the first round o EZs were relatively modest. (author abstract)

    This article empirically assesses the incidence and efficiency of Round 1 of the federal urban Empowerment Zone (EZ) program using confidential microdata from the Decennial Census and the Longitudinal Business Database. Using rejected and future applicants to the EZ program as controls, we find that EZ designation substantially increased employment in zone neighborhoods and generated wage increases for local workers without corresponding increases in population or the local cost of living. The results suggest the efficiency costs of the first round o EZs were relatively modest. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Ludwig, Jens; Duncan, Greg J.; Gennetian, Lisa A.; Katz, Lawrence F.; Kessler, Ronald C.; Kling, Jeffrey R.; Sanbonmatsu, Lisa
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2012

    Nearly 9 million Americans live in extreme-poverty neighborhoods, places that also tend to be racially segregated and dangerous. Yet, the effects on the well-being of residents of moving out of such communities into less distressed areas remain uncertain. Using data from Moving to Opportunity, a unique randomized housing mobility experiment, we found that moving from a high-poverty to lower-poverty neighborhood leads to long-term (10- to 15-year) improvements in adult physical and mental health and subjective well-being, despite not affecting economic self-sufficiency. A 1–standard deviation decline in neighborhood poverty (13 percentage points) increases subjective well-being by an amount equal to the gap in subjective well-being between people whose annual incomes differ by $13,000—a large amount given that the average control group income is $20,000. Subjective well-being is more strongly affected by changes in neighborhood economic disadvantage than racial segregation, which is important because racial segregation has been declining since 1970, but income segregation has been...

    Nearly 9 million Americans live in extreme-poverty neighborhoods, places that also tend to be racially segregated and dangerous. Yet, the effects on the well-being of residents of moving out of such communities into less distressed areas remain uncertain. Using data from Moving to Opportunity, a unique randomized housing mobility experiment, we found that moving from a high-poverty to lower-poverty neighborhood leads to long-term (10- to 15-year) improvements in adult physical and mental health and subjective well-being, despite not affecting economic self-sufficiency. A 1–standard deviation decline in neighborhood poverty (13 percentage points) increases subjective well-being by an amount equal to the gap in subjective well-being between people whose annual incomes differ by $13,000—a large amount given that the average control group income is $20,000. Subjective well-being is more strongly affected by changes in neighborhood economic disadvantage than racial segregation, which is important because racial segregation has been declining since 1970, but income segregation has been increasing. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Wood, Robert G.; Moore, Quinn; Clarkwest, Andrew
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2011

    Building Strong Families (BSF), a program of relationship skills education for unwed parents, has been found in a rigorous random assignment evaluation to have limited effects on couples who signed up for the program (Wood, McConnell, et al. 2010). Averaging results across the eight local programs that participated in the evaluation, BSF had no effect on the couples’ relationship quality or on the likelihood that they would remain romantically involved or get married 15 months after they enrolled in the program. When impacts were examined separately for the eight programs, only one was found to have a consistent pattern of positive effects on couples’ relationships, while another was found to have negative effects.

    These results, however, leave us with an unanswered question of wide interest, because not all couples randomly assigned to receive BSF services actually participated. The core BSF service was group workshops on relationship skills, and across all evaluation sites about 45 percent of the couples assigned to the program group never attended even one workshop...

    Building Strong Families (BSF), a program of relationship skills education for unwed parents, has been found in a rigorous random assignment evaluation to have limited effects on couples who signed up for the program (Wood, McConnell, et al. 2010). Averaging results across the eight local programs that participated in the evaluation, BSF had no effect on the couples’ relationship quality or on the likelihood that they would remain romantically involved or get married 15 months after they enrolled in the program. When impacts were examined separately for the eight programs, only one was found to have a consistent pattern of positive effects on couples’ relationships, while another was found to have negative effects.

    These results, however, leave us with an unanswered question of wide interest, because not all couples randomly assigned to receive BSF services actually participated. The core BSF service was group workshops on relationship skills, and across all evaluation sites about 45 percent of the couples assigned to the program group never attended even one workshop session. BSF was a voluntary program and voluntary programs, particularly those serving low-income families, often have low participation rates (McCurdy and Daro 2001; Myers et al. 1992; Garvey et al. 2006). Even so, it is natural to ask whether BSF had any effects on the couples who did attend group sessions.

    The analysis finds no strong evidence of effects on couples who attended group sessions. Among those who attended at least one group session, there were no statistically significant effects on the key relationship outcomes. Among the smaller group of couples who attended at least half of the group sessions offered, there was no strong evidence of effects, with one exception. BSF appears to have increased the likelihood that these couples would be living together (married or unmarried) at the 15-month follow-up—with an impact on this outcome of 7 to 10 percentage points. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Kingsley, G. Thomas; Pettit, Kathryn L.S.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2008

    Families in HUD's Moving to Opportunity program had the chance to move to neighborhoods with lower poverty, lower crime rates and, presumably, more opportunities for employment, good schools and better quality of life. Did they benefit from the moves and did they remain there to continue those benefits? This brief identifies patterns of moving for MTO families and the characteristics of the neighborhoods both from and to which they moved. (author abstract)

    Families in HUD's Moving to Opportunity program had the chance to move to neighborhoods with lower poverty, lower crime rates and, presumably, more opportunities for employment, good schools and better quality of life. Did they benefit from the moves and did they remain there to continue those benefits? This brief identifies patterns of moving for MTO families and the characteristics of the neighborhoods both from and to which they moved. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hetling, Andrea; Born, Catherine E.; Tracy, Kirk
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2004

    The purpose of the present study is to provide policymakers and program managers with important data relevant to the time-limit population and time limit policy. Specifically, using telephone survey data from a random sample of single parent, Maryland cash assistance case heads, the study looks at the intersection of the five-year time limit threshold and urban residence, that is residence in the City of Baltimore. We focus particularly on adult case heads in Baltimore City who, through exemption or extension, had been on assistance for 60 months or more and examine how their profiles and self-perceived barriers compare to those of urban recipient adults who had received fewer than 12 months of cash assistance.

    The study permits us to begin to disentangle the impact of urban residence from the correlates of being a long-term versus short-term welfare user. That is, by limiting the analyses to urban cases, we are able to present information about the barriers faced by time-limit cases within a local context. This is an important analytical variation. Without separating out...

    The purpose of the present study is to provide policymakers and program managers with important data relevant to the time-limit population and time limit policy. Specifically, using telephone survey data from a random sample of single parent, Maryland cash assistance case heads, the study looks at the intersection of the five-year time limit threshold and urban residence, that is residence in the City of Baltimore. We focus particularly on adult case heads in Baltimore City who, through exemption or extension, had been on assistance for 60 months or more and examine how their profiles and self-perceived barriers compare to those of urban recipient adults who had received fewer than 12 months of cash assistance.

    The study permits us to begin to disentangle the impact of urban residence from the correlates of being a long-term versus short-term welfare user. That is, by limiting the analyses to urban cases, we are able to present information about the barriers faced by time-limit cases within a local context. This is an important analytical variation. Without separating out or controlling for city residence, studies of time limit cases might be identifying differences between urban and non-urban areas and caseloads, rather than real differences between time-limit and non time-limit cases. Although preliminary, the study is also important because it offers some thoughts for policy-making, program development, and front-line case management for a client group which has already reached the federal time limit, can only increase in size with the passage of time, is at heightened risk of losing benefits, and yet may be quite disadvantaged relative to other welfare clients. (author abstract)

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