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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: Gould, Elise; Wething, Hilary; Sabadish, Natalie; Finio, Nicholas
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    The income level necessary for families to secure an adequate but modest living standard is an important economic yardstick. While poverty thresholds, generally set at the national level, help to evaluate what it takes for families to live free of serious economic deprivation, the Economic Policy Institute’s (EPI) Family Budget Calculator—recently updated for 2013—offers a broader measure of economic welfare and provides an additional metric for academics and policy experts looking for comprehensive measures of economic security. The basic family budgets presented in this report, as well as those presented via the Family Budget Calculator itself, measure the income families need in order to attain a secure yet modest living standard where they live by estimating community-specific costs of housing, food, child care, transportation, health care, other necessities, and taxes. (author abstract) 

    The income level necessary for families to secure an adequate but modest living standard is an important economic yardstick. While poverty thresholds, generally set at the national level, help to evaluate what it takes for families to live free of serious economic deprivation, the Economic Policy Institute’s (EPI) Family Budget Calculator—recently updated for 2013—offers a broader measure of economic welfare and provides an additional metric for academics and policy experts looking for comprehensive measures of economic security. The basic family budgets presented in this report, as well as those presented via the Family Budget Calculator itself, measure the income families need in order to attain a secure yet modest living standard where they live by estimating community-specific costs of housing, food, child care, transportation, health care, other necessities, and taxes. (author abstract) 

  • Individual Author: Aikens, Nikki; Klein, Ashley Kopak; Tarullo, Louisa; West, Jerry
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    This report describes the family backgrounds and developmental outcomes of children as they completed the program and also describes progress in children’s outcomes between Head Start entry and exit. It focuses on the population of children who entered Head Start for the first time in fall 2009 and completed one or two years of the program in spring 2010 or spring 2011 before entering kindergarten. This report on children’s kindergarten readiness is the third in a series of reports describing data from the 2009 cohort of the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES 2009). Previous FACES 2009 reports described the characteristics of children and their families and programs as they entered Head Start in fall 2009 and at the end of one year in the program. (Author abstract)

    This report describes the family backgrounds and developmental outcomes of children as they completed the program and also describes progress in children’s outcomes between Head Start entry and exit. It focuses on the population of children who entered Head Start for the first time in fall 2009 and completed one or two years of the program in spring 2010 or spring 2011 before entering kindergarten. This report on children’s kindergarten readiness is the third in a series of reports describing data from the 2009 cohort of the Head Start Family and Child Experiences Survey (FACES 2009). Previous FACES 2009 reports described the characteristics of children and their families and programs as they entered Head Start in fall 2009 and at the end of one year in the program. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hoover, Gary A.; Yaya, Mehmet E.
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2011

    In this study, the authors investigate the income inequality responses of Blacks, Whites, and Hispanics in the United States to the income maintenance program Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) using cross sections of state-level data. The results show that this program indeed reduces income inequality but the impacts are not uniform across racial/ethnic groups. Specifically, the authors find that Blacks have results that differ from those of the other two groups or those of the United States as a whole. These results are robust when using either the Gini or Theil measure of inequality. (Author abstract)

    In this study, the authors investigate the income inequality responses of Blacks, Whites, and Hispanics in the United States to the income maintenance program Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) using cross sections of state-level data. The results show that this program indeed reduces income inequality but the impacts are not uniform across racial/ethnic groups. Specifically, the authors find that Blacks have results that differ from those of the other two groups or those of the United States as a whole. These results are robust when using either the Gini or Theil measure of inequality. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Braun, R. Anton ; Kopecky, Karen A.; Koreshkova, Tatyana
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    Poor heath, large acute and long-term care medical expenses, and spousal death are significant drivers of impoverishment among retirees. We document these facts and build a rich, overlapping generations model that reproduces them. We use the model to assess the incentive and welfare effects of Social Security and means-tested social insurance programs such as Medicaid and food stamp programs, for the aged. We find that U.S. means-tested social insurance programs for retirees provide significant welfare benefits for all newborn. Moreover, when means-tested social insurance benefits are of the scale in the United States, all individuals would prefer to be born into an economy with no Social Security. Finally, we find that the benefits of increasing means-tested social insurance are small or negative, if we hold fixed Social Security contributions and benefits at their current levels. (Author abstract)

    Poor heath, large acute and long-term care medical expenses, and spousal death are significant drivers of impoverishment among retirees. We document these facts and build a rich, overlapping generations model that reproduces them. We use the model to assess the incentive and welfare effects of Social Security and means-tested social insurance programs such as Medicaid and food stamp programs, for the aged. We find that U.S. means-tested social insurance programs for retirees provide significant welfare benefits for all newborn. Moreover, when means-tested social insurance benefits are of the scale in the United States, all individuals would prefer to be born into an economy with no Social Security. Finally, we find that the benefits of increasing means-tested social insurance are small or negative, if we hold fixed Social Security contributions and benefits at their current levels. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gould, Elise; Cooper, David
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    Policymakers considering changes to social insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicare must consider the economic realities confronting elderly Americans. Many of America’s 41 million seniors are just one bad economic shock away from significant material hardship. Most seniors live on modest retirement incomes, which often are barely adequate—and sometimes inadequate—to cover the costs of basic necessities and support a simple, yet dignified, quality of life. For these seniors, and even for those with greater means, Social Security and Medicare are the bedrock of their financial security. Any proposed changes to these programs must be evaluated not just for their impact on future budget deficits, but for their impact on living standards of the elderly. In this study, we use the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) from the U.S. Census Bureau to assess the economic health of the elderly population in the United States, overall and by age, gender, and race and ethnicity. Using evidence on elderly economic insecurity from Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW), we identify...

    Policymakers considering changes to social insurance programs such as Social Security and Medicare must consider the economic realities confronting elderly Americans. Many of America’s 41 million seniors are just one bad economic shock away from significant material hardship. Most seniors live on modest retirement incomes, which often are barely adequate—and sometimes inadequate—to cover the costs of basic necessities and support a simple, yet dignified, quality of life. For these seniors, and even for those with greater means, Social Security and Medicare are the bedrock of their financial security. Any proposed changes to these programs must be evaluated not just for their impact on future budget deficits, but for their impact on living standards of the elderly. In this study, we use the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM) from the U.S. Census Bureau to assess the economic health of the elderly population in the United States, overall and by age, gender, and race and ethnicity. Using evidence on elderly economic insecurity from Wider Opportunities for Women (WOW), we identify the share of the elderly population that is particularly vulnerable to changes in social programs. Our analysis enables us to estimate how proposed increased cost-sharing by Medicare beneficiaries or reduced Social Security benefits would impact the well-being of a significant portion of the elderly population. (Author abstract)

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