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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: Holzer, Harry
    Reference Type: Book Chapter/Book
    Year: 1996

    A very important contribution to the field of labor economics, and in particular to the understanding of the labor market for workers with relatively low skill levels. I think we have the sense that the market looks bad, but haven't been clear on how bad it is, or how it got that way. What Employers Want provides some of the answers and identifies the important questions. It is essential reading. —Jeffrey S. Zax, University of Colorado at Boulder

    The substantial deterioration in employment and earnings among the nation's less-educated workers, especially minorities and younger males in the nation's big cities, has been tentatively ascribed to a variety of causes: an increase in required job skills, the movement of companies from the cities to the suburbs, and a rising unwillingness to hire minority job seekers. What Employers Want is the first book to replace conjecture about today's job market with first-hand information gleaned from employers about who gets hired. Drawn from a survey of over 3,000 employers in four major metropolitan areas—Los Angeles, Boston, Atlanta,...

    A very important contribution to the field of labor economics, and in particular to the understanding of the labor market for workers with relatively low skill levels. I think we have the sense that the market looks bad, but haven't been clear on how bad it is, or how it got that way. What Employers Want provides some of the answers and identifies the important questions. It is essential reading. —Jeffrey S. Zax, University of Colorado at Boulder

    The substantial deterioration in employment and earnings among the nation's less-educated workers, especially minorities and younger males in the nation's big cities, has been tentatively ascribed to a variety of causes: an increase in required job skills, the movement of companies from the cities to the suburbs, and a rising unwillingness to hire minority job seekers. What Employers Want is the first book to replace conjecture about today's job market with first-hand information gleaned from employers about who gets hired. Drawn from a survey of over 3,000 employers in four major metropolitan areas—Los Angeles, Boston, Atlanta, and Detroit—this volume provides a wealth of data on what jobs are available to the less-educated, in what industries, what skills they require, where they are located, what they pay, and how they are filled.

    The evidence points to a dramatic surge in suburban, white-collar jobs. The manufacturing industry—once a steady employer of blue-collar workers—has been eclipsed by the expanding retail trade and service industries, where the vast majority of jobs are in clerical, managerial, or sales positions. Since manufacturing establishments have been the most likely employers to move from the central cities to the suburbs, the shortage of jobs for low-skill urban workers is particularly acute. In the central cities, the problem is compounded and available jobs remain vacant because employers increasingly require greater cognitive and social skills as well as specific job-related experience. Holzer reveals the extent to which minorities are routinely excluded by employer recruitment and screening practices that rely heavily on testing, informal referrals, and stable work histories. The inaccessible location and discriminatory hiring patterns of suburban employers further limit the hiring of black males in particular, while earnings, especially for minority females, remain low.

    Proponents of welfare reform often assume that stricter work requirements and shorter eligibility periods will effectively channel welfare recipients toward steady employment and off federal subsidies. What Employers Want directly challenges this premise and demonstrates that only concerted efforts to close the gap between urban employers and inner city residents can produce healthy levels of employment in the nation's cities. Professor Holzer outlines the measures that will be necessary—targeted education and training programs, improved transportation and job placement, heightened enforcement of anti-discrimination laws, and aggressive job creation strategies. Repairing urban labor markets will not be easy. This book shows why. (author abstract) 

  • Individual Author: Freedman, Stephen; Friedlander, Daniel; Lin, Winston; Schweder, Amanda
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1996

    The paper summarizes the latest finding on the effectiveness of California’s Greater Avenues for Independence (GAIN) Program, a statewide initiative aimed at increasing the employment and self-sufficiency of recipients of Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), the nation's major case welfare program. GAIN’s effects are estimated for a sample of 33,000 persons from six counties — including single parents (AFDC-FGs) and unemployed heads of two-parent households (AFDC-Us) — who entered the program between early 1988 and mid-1990. Each sample member was then assigned at random to either an experimental group, who were required to participate in GAIN, or to a control group who were precluded from the program but could seek other services in their community. The paper compares average earnings and AFDC payments for each group over a five-year follow-up, beginning with the first quarter after random assignment (i.e., from quarters 2 through 21). Differences in average earnings and AFDC payments for each group represent the effects, or impacts, of GAIN.

    The paper and...

    The paper summarizes the latest finding on the effectiveness of California’s Greater Avenues for Independence (GAIN) Program, a statewide initiative aimed at increasing the employment and self-sufficiency of recipients of Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), the nation's major case welfare program. GAIN’s effects are estimated for a sample of 33,000 persons from six counties — including single parents (AFDC-FGs) and unemployed heads of two-parent households (AFDC-Us) — who entered the program between early 1988 and mid-1990. Each sample member was then assigned at random to either an experimental group, who were required to participate in GAIN, or to a control group who were precluded from the program but could seek other services in their community. The paper compares average earnings and AFDC payments for each group over a five-year follow-up, beginning with the first quarter after random assignment (i.e., from quarters 2 through 21). Differences in average earnings and AFDC payments for each group represent the effects, or impacts, of GAIN.

    The paper and attached tables and graphs add two years of follow-up to the impact results in Riccio, Friedlander, and Freedman (1994). Among the most noteworthy findings of this paper is that earning gains continued through year five for both assistance groups. GAIN also continued to produce savings in AFDC payments, but only for AFDC-FGs. Such persistence in program effects is unusual for a welfare-to-work initiative and represents a significant achievement for the GAIN program. On the other hand, only about 4 in 10 experimental group members in either assistance group worked for pay during the final year of follow-up; and a relatively large percentage (nearly 40 percent of AFDC-FGs and close to half of AFDC-Us) were receiving AFDC payment at the end of year five. These results indicate that future improvements in the program effectiveness will depend in part on success in helping these long-term AFDC recipients find stable employment. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Mason, Patrick L.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1996

    This literature review gathers evidence on the relationship between African American male economic potential in the formal sector of the economy and transitions in African American family structure and marital stability. This review also provides insight into the crime, unemployment, family structure, and race debate. Competing theoretical explanations of transitions in family structure and marital stability are examined. Specifically, we compare the "African American structural model" with the "new household economics" and the sociological tradition that alleges that African American family life is pathological. (author abstract)

    This literature review gathers evidence on the relationship between African American male economic potential in the formal sector of the economy and transitions in African American family structure and marital stability. This review also provides insight into the crime, unemployment, family structure, and race debate. Competing theoretical explanations of transitions in family structure and marital stability are examined. Specifically, we compare the "African American structural model" with the "new household economics" and the sociological tradition that alleges that African American family life is pathological. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Herr, Toby; Wagner, Suzanne L. ; Halpern, Robert
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1996

    Combining research, theory, and best practice, this monograph provides a blueprint for a flexible welfare-to-work system that benefits all types of welfare recipients—from those who are working to those who need to develop the most basic skills and behaviors to succeed on the job. The authors take TANF's work requirements and time limit into account in their discussion. (author abstract)

    Combining research, theory, and best practice, this monograph provides a blueprint for a flexible welfare-to-work system that benefits all types of welfare recipients—from those who are working to those who need to develop the most basic skills and behaviors to succeed on the job. The authors take TANF's work requirements and time limit into account in their discussion. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Garasky, Steven
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 1996

    In examining teenage and young adult employment, this study has three objectives. It seeks to throw light on reasons that some teenagers work and some do not. It explores the effect teenage labor force participation has on teenage educational attainment. Finally, it considers the longer-term effects of early employment on young adult work and wages. Four cross-sectional analyses are performed separately for male and female cohorts of original National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY) respondents who were aged 14 through 16 at the first interview in 1979. These analyses take the fullest advantage of the longitudinal nature of the data, using information from every year available, 1979 through 1993. Childhood family structure is found to have little impact on teenage employment and timely high school graduation. However, there is evidence that teenage employment has positive effects on high school graduation and later labor force participation. (author abstract)

    In examining teenage and young adult employment, this study has three objectives. It seeks to throw light on reasons that some teenagers work and some do not. It explores the effect teenage labor force participation has on teenage educational attainment. Finally, it considers the longer-term effects of early employment on young adult work and wages. Four cross-sectional analyses are performed separately for male and female cohorts of original National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY) respondents who were aged 14 through 16 at the first interview in 1979. These analyses take the fullest advantage of the longitudinal nature of the data, using information from every year available, 1979 through 1993. Childhood family structure is found to have little impact on teenage employment and timely high school graduation. However, there is evidence that teenage employment has positive effects on high school graduation and later labor force participation. (author abstract)

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