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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: Schneider, Jo Anne
    Reference Type: White Papers
    Year: 2006

    This paper provides a succinct overview of the concept of social capital and describes ways in which social capital can play a role in economic and community development. Examples illustrating these concepts are drawn from more than 20 years of research in urban communities, as well as from case studies produced by others involved with community development. The paper addresses the following questions:
    1) What is social capital, and how do the various kinds of social capital play out in the ways that community needs are met?
    2) What kinds of social capital building strategies are useful in economic and community development?

    (Author abstract)

    This paper provides a succinct overview of the concept of social capital and describes ways in which social capital can play a role in economic and community development. Examples illustrating these concepts are drawn from more than 20 years of research in urban communities, as well as from case studies produced by others involved with community development. The paper addresses the following questions:
    1) What is social capital, and how do the various kinds of social capital play out in the ways that community needs are met?
    2) What kinds of social capital building strategies are useful in economic and community development?

    (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Abt Associates, Inc.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2006

    In 1995, the Annie E. Casey Foundation launched the Jobs Initiative, a $30-million investment over eight years in six cities to help disadvantaged, low-skilled workers secure jobs earning family-supporting wages. As the Jobs Initiative unfolded, issues quickly arose demonstrating that race, ethnicity and cultural perspectives mattered for job seekers, employers and others – particularly workforce development organizations-involved in connecting these two groups. To share what the Jobs Initiative sites were learning about how these issues emerged in workforce development, the Foundation published Taking the Initiative on Jobs and Race (2001), a report which offers a perspective about how to think, talk and act about the complexity of race and regional labor markets, particularly for low-skilled workers. Since that report, the Jobs Initiative experience illustrates that issues of race, ethnicity and culture arise along every point on the continuum of workforce development. Paying attention to these issues enhances the likelihood that workforce development efforts will achieve their...

    In 1995, the Annie E. Casey Foundation launched the Jobs Initiative, a $30-million investment over eight years in six cities to help disadvantaged, low-skilled workers secure jobs earning family-supporting wages. As the Jobs Initiative unfolded, issues quickly arose demonstrating that race, ethnicity and cultural perspectives mattered for job seekers, employers and others – particularly workforce development organizations-involved in connecting these two groups. To share what the Jobs Initiative sites were learning about how these issues emerged in workforce development, the Foundation published Taking the Initiative on Jobs and Race (2001), a report which offers a perspective about how to think, talk and act about the complexity of race and regional labor markets, particularly for low-skilled workers. Since that report, the Jobs Initiative experience illustrates that issues of race, ethnicity and culture arise along every point on the continuum of workforce development. Paying attention to these issues enhances the likelihood that workforce development efforts will achieve their desired results. Those involved in the Jobs Initiative know firsthand that these issues merit attention not only because of what they have learned but because these are timely issues worldwide. As the world economy becomes more global and as the U.S. becomes increasingly ethnically diverse, the world of work is changing. The demographics of America’s workforce historically have influenced the structure and evolution of this nation’s economy. Today, as the nation’s ethnic minority population grows, it is virtually impossible to overlook or ignore issues of race, ethnicity and culture, especially if workforce development efforts aimed at supporting low-skilled, entry-level workers are to succeed. By sharing lessons learned, the Jobs Initiative seeks again to contribute to a wider discourse about how to strengthen the success of America’s workforce by acknowledging and using to everyone’s advantage diverse racial, ethnic and cultural perspectives. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hein, Maria L.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2006

    The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) began funding Individual Development Account (IDA) programs for low-income refugees in October 1999. The objectives of ORR’s IDA program are: 1) "to promote the participation of refugees in the financial institutions of this country;" and 2) "to assist refugees in purchasing assets to promote their economic self-sufficiency."

    The Office of Refugee Resettlement’s IDA program, as described in the 1999 Program Announcement (Federal Register, June, 9, 1999), is designed to help participants to purchase assets, as a means of increasing their financial independence. Program participants receive financial literacy training and have the opportunity to open a matched savings account. IDA program participants must save toward one of the following savings goals:

    • Homeownership or renovation;
    • Microenterprise capitalization;
    • Post-secondary education;
    • Vocational training or recertification;
    • Automobile purchase (if needed to maintain or upgrade employment)
    • Computer purchase (for one’s...

    The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) began funding Individual Development Account (IDA) programs for low-income refugees in October 1999. The objectives of ORR’s IDA program are: 1) "to promote the participation of refugees in the financial institutions of this country;" and 2) "to assist refugees in purchasing assets to promote their economic self-sufficiency."

    The Office of Refugee Resettlement’s IDA program, as described in the 1999 Program Announcement (Federal Register, June, 9, 1999), is designed to help participants to purchase assets, as a means of increasing their financial independence. Program participants receive financial literacy training and have the opportunity to open a matched savings account. IDA program participants must save toward one of the following savings goals:

    • Homeownership or renovation;
    • Microenterprise capitalization;
    • Post-secondary education;
    • Vocational training or recertification;
    • Automobile purchase (if needed to maintain or upgrade employment)
    • Computer purchase (for one’s education or microenterprise).

    At the time that funds are withdrawn for a qualifying asset purchase, the withdrawals are matched. Some of ORR’s IDA program grantees offer a 1:1 match (i.e., in these programs, an individual participant can have a maximum of $4,000 of their savings matched, receiving a $4,000 match, for a total of $8,000 toward their asset purchase). The remainder offer a 2:1 match (i.e., in these programs, an individual participant can have a maximum of $2,000 of their savings matched, receiving a $4,000 match, for a total of $6,000 toward their asset purchase).

    In order to qualify for ORR’s IDA program, a refugee (see footnote 1) must:

    • Have earned income
    • Have a household earned income that does not exceed 200 percent of the federal poverty level (at the time of program enrollment)
    • Have assets that do not exceed $10,000 (at the time of enrollment), excluding the value of a primary residence.

    (author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Rawlings, Lynette A.; Capps, Randolph; Gentsch, Kerstin; Fortuny, Karina
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2007

    How are immigrants integrating in U.S. inner cities? To answer this question, this report draws on a unique survey of residents in 10 vulnerable urban neighborhoods to examine the financial well-being and economic integration of families of different racial, ethnic, and nativity status. The paper explores the extent to which the economic well-being of immigrant groups is influenced by specific factors related to their immigrant status, compared with members of native-born minority groups and native-born whites. Among the main findings from the analysis is that families with children across all groups are especially vulnerable. In addition, we find that immigrants and native minorities in the neighborhoods we examine face similar types of economic difficulties—although to varying degrees. However, after controlling for citizenship, English proficiency, education and having a driver's license and a reliable car, many of the economic disadvantages disappear for immigrant groups, but not for native-born minorities. These findings suggest that even in these tough neighborhoods, the...

    How are immigrants integrating in U.S. inner cities? To answer this question, this report draws on a unique survey of residents in 10 vulnerable urban neighborhoods to examine the financial well-being and economic integration of families of different racial, ethnic, and nativity status. The paper explores the extent to which the economic well-being of immigrant groups is influenced by specific factors related to their immigrant status, compared with members of native-born minority groups and native-born whites. Among the main findings from the analysis is that families with children across all groups are especially vulnerable. In addition, we find that immigrants and native minorities in the neighborhoods we examine face similar types of economic difficulties—although to varying degrees. However, after controlling for citizenship, English proficiency, education and having a driver's license and a reliable car, many of the economic disadvantages disappear for immigrant groups, but not for native-born minorities. These findings suggest that even in these tough neighborhoods, the potential for economic integration of immigrants is strong. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Rawlings, Lynette A.; Gentsch, Kerstin
    Reference Type: Stakeholder Resource
    Year: 2008

    In the second fact sheet we examine what percent of respondents in low-income neighborhoods received financial help in the last 12 months from families and friends or from other people they live with. Overall, 25 percent of respondents received financial help from families and friends. This figure differs substantially by nativity. Moreover, the patterns of receiving help from family and friends are fairly similar across race and ethnic groups for U.S.-born respondents, whereas the percent of immigrant respondents who received help from family and friends differed sizably among region of origin. (author abstract)

    In the second fact sheet we examine what percent of respondents in low-income neighborhoods received financial help in the last 12 months from families and friends or from other people they live with. Overall, 25 percent of respondents received financial help from families and friends. This figure differs substantially by nativity. Moreover, the patterns of receiving help from family and friends are fairly similar across race and ethnic groups for U.S.-born respondents, whereas the percent of immigrant respondents who received help from family and friends differed sizably among region of origin. (author abstract)

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