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Latest Inequality & Social Policy In the News

Good jobs without a degree? Boston's $3 million test

Good jobs without a degree? Boston's $3 million test

April 11, 2016

Christian Science Monitor | Facing problems of income inequality, US cities looking at new ways to create well-paying jobs for workers. With insights from Alicia Sasser Modestino (Ph.D. '01), associate professor at Northeastern University.

The Puzzles for Pollsters

The Puzzles for Pollsters

April 6, 2016

Harvard Gazette | Coverage of Political Analytics conference, which explored the field of data analytics and its potential applications to politics. Organized by Ryan Enos, Associate Professor of Government, and Kirk Goldsberry, a visiting scholar at Harvard's Center for Geographic Analysis, the event was hosted by the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University.

When the Poor Move, Do They Move Up?

When the Poor Move, Do They Move Up?

April 6, 2016

The American Prospect | Quotes Patrick Sharkey (Ph.D. '07) of New York University, and Justin Wolfers (Ph.D. '01) of University of Michigan.

How Longer School Days Can Fight the Effects of Income Inequality

How Longer School Days Can Fight the Effects of Income Inequality

April 5, 2016

The Boston Globe Magazine| Cites faculty affiliates Robert Putnam on what affluent families spend on after-school, vacation, and summer learning opportunities for their children, and Roland Fryer on the benefits of increased school time as a predictor of student success. 

Boston hopes data can aid its efforts in fighting fires

Boston hopes data can aid its efforts in fighting fires

April 4, 2016

Boston Globe | Quotes Jeffrey B. Liebman, Malcolm Wiener Professor of Social Policy, who notes that "Over the past several years the City of Boston has emerged as a national leader in creatively using technology to improve public services." The article details a brief released by the Harvard Kennedy School Rapport Institute, which tracks how the city of Boston is using data and digital technology.

In poor neighborhoods, is it better to fix up or move out?

In poor neighborhoods, is it better to fix up or move out?

April 4, 2016

Christian Science Monitor | Quotes Robert J. Sampson (Henry Ford II Professor of the Social Sciences) on the limitations of focusing on moving people out of bad neighborhoods. Also cites finding by Raj Chetty (Stanford University) and Harvard's Nathaniel Hendren (Assistant Professor of Economics) that "the causal effects of place" account for 50-70 percent of the differences in intergenerational mobility.

With "Gigs" Instead of Jobs, Workers Bear New Burdens

With "Gigs" Instead of Jobs, Workers Bear New Burdens

March 31, 2016

The New York Times | Discusses implications of new research by Lawrence Katz (Elisabeth Allen Professor of Economics) and Alan Krueger (Princeton University) showing that proportion of American workers who don’t have traditional jobs — who instead work as independent contractors, through temporary services or on-call — has soared in the last decade. View the research.

The Lifelong Health Toll of Schoolyard Racism

The Lifelong Health Toll of Schoolyard Racism

March 29, 2016

Pacific Standard | Quotes and cites David R. Williams, the Florence Sprague Norman and Laura Smart Norman Professor of Public Health at the Harvard T.H Chan School of Public Health (HSPH) and Professor of African and African American Studies and of Sociology at Harvard University. Williams discussed this research in his Inequality & Social Policy Seminar presentation, Feb 8, 2016 (Read more). 

On Chicago’s West Side, no rebound from the recession

On Chicago’s West Side, no rebound from the recession

March 29, 2016

The Chicago Reporter | Article examining black joblessness quotes Devah Pager on the effects of a criminal record and racial discrimination that African-American job-seekers face. Pager is Professor of Sociology and Public Policy and Director of the Multidisciplinary Program in Inequality & Social Policy.

Contract Workforce Outpaces Growth in Silicon-Valley Style ‘Gig’ Jobs

Contract Workforce Outpaces Growth in Silicon-Valley Style ‘Gig’ Jobs

March 25, 2016

Wall Street Journal | Discusses new research by Lawrence Katz, Elisabeth Allen Professor of Economics at Harvard, and Alan Krueger of Princeton University, showing that that the number of workers in alternative arrangements—including contract work, on-call labor, and temp workers—has risen to nearly 16% of the workforce from 10% a decade ago, and what it means that a growing share of the workforce "has come untethered from stable employment and its attendant benefits and job protections."

... Read more about Contract Workforce Outpaces Growth in Silicon-Valley Style ‘Gig’ Jobs

The Dream Team That Could Fix Drug Pricing

The Dream Team That Could Fix Drug Pricing

March 24, 2016

Forbes | Among the suggestions, Amitabh Chandra, Malcolm Wiener Professor of Social Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and a member of the Congressional Budget Office’s Panel of Health Advisors.

Undocumented US immigrants are far likelier to be working than American men

Undocumented US immigrants are far likelier to be working than American men

March 22, 2016

Quartz | Delves into new NBER working paper by George J. Borjas, which is described as an "ambitious attempt to shed light on how undocumented immigrants in the US have typically interacted with the U.S. labor market over the last two decades." Borjas is the Robert W. Scrivner Professor of Economics and Social Policy at Harvard Kennedy School. Read the original research: "The Labor Supply of Undocumented Immigrants."

Latest commentary and analysis

The Untapped Potential of Data-Driven Policy

The Untapped Potential of Data-Driven Policy

April 6, 2016

City Journal—10 Blocks Podcast | Interview with Michael Luca on new uses of data for cities. Luca is an Assistant Professor at Harvard Business School. [Full transcript and audio: 15 minutes]

The stories behind the unseen eviction crisis

The stories behind the unseen eviction crisis

April 5, 2016

PBS NewshourSociologist Matthew Desmond examined the experiences of evicted families for his new book Evicted, and joins Jeffrey Brown of Newshour to discuss what he learned. [Video: 7 minutes]

New data show how liberal Merrick Garland really is

New data show how liberal Merrick Garland really is

March 30, 2016

Washington Post | By Adam Bonica (Stanford University)Adam Chilton (University of Chicago Law School)Jacob Goldin (Stanford Law)Kyle Rozema (Northwestern Pritzker School of Law) and Maya Sen (Harvard Kennedy School).

A conversation on immigration and policy

A conversation on immigration and policy

March 30, 2016

Bloggingheads.tv | Economist Glenn Loury (Brown University) talks immigration with George Borjas, Robert W. Scrivner Professor of Economics and Social Policy, Harvard Kennedy School. [video: 39 minutes]

Hillary and Bernie, Tax Fantasists

Hillary and Bernie, Tax Fantasists

March 28, 2016

Wall Street Journal | By Scott Winship (Ph.D. '09), Walter B. Wriston Fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research. Soak-the-rich proposals ignore history and wouldn't raise nearly enough to fund big spending plans, Winship argues.

How 'Pay for Success' Allows Governments to Experiment without Risk

How 'Pay for Success' Allows Governments to Experiment without Risk

March 23, 2016

Harvard Kennedy School PolicyCast | Jeffrey Liebman, Malcolm Wiener Professor of Social Policy, explains the Pay For Success model, also known as Social Impact Bonds, which he has been piloting across the country through the Kennedy School’s Government Performance Lab [audio: 32 minutes].

Why More Americans Are Getting Evicted

Why More Americans Are Getting Evicted

March 17, 2016

Slate | Interview with Matthew Desmond, John L. Loeb Associate Professor of the Social Sciences at Harvard and author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City.

Interview with William Julius Wilson

Interview with William Julius Wilson

March 16, 2016

Vermont Public Radio | William Julius Wilson, Lewis P. and Linda L. Geyser University Professor, talks about race, class, growing economic segregation and class disparities, and the Black Lives Matter movement [text and audio: 7:37 minutes].

The Impact of High Levels of Immigration on U.S. Workers

The Impact of High Levels of Immigration on U.S. Workers

March 16, 2016

U.S. Senate—Testimony | George J. Borjas, Robert W. Scrivner of Economics and Social Policy. Testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest. 

Trumpism: Is culture or the economy behind the rise of Donald Trump?

Trumpism: Is culture or the economy behind the rise of Donald Trump?

March 15, 2016

National Review | By Scott Winship (Ph.D. '09), Walter B. Wriston fellow at the Manhattan Institute.  Winship argues there is little evidence that economic anxiety explains the rise of Trump. Rather, Winship suggests, "Trumpism is being driven primarily by cultural anxiety — by dissatisfaction with cultural change and perceived cultural decline. "

How Housing Vouchers Can Fight Residential Segregation

How Housing Vouchers Can Fight Residential Segregation

March 15, 2016

The Nation | By Eva Rosen (Ph.D '14), a postdoctoral fellow in the Poverty and Inequality Research Lab at Johns Hopkins University. Rosen argues that housing vouchers offer a chance to remedy longstanding inequalities—but are not yet fully equipped to do so. This article originally appeared at TalkPoverty.org. Rosen is currently working on a book about housing vouchers in Baltimore.