This paper characterizes the types of individuals who would face work requirements in SNAP and Medicaid, describes what their work experiences are over a two-year period, and identifies the reasons why they are not working if they experience a period of unemployment or labor force nonparticipation. The analysis concludes that proposed work requirements would put at risk access to food assistance and health care for millions who are working, trying to work, or face barriers to working.
Ryan Nunn, Jana Parsons, and Jay Shambaugh investigate the factors that have created concentrated prosperity in the United States while leaving many places behind. They explore how economic activity has shifted, as well as the factors that are associated with success or failure for particular places.
Bradley Hardy, Trevon Logan, and John Parman describe the legacy of structural racism and its influence on economic outcomes for people and places today, outlining the role it should play in informing policy to improve economic conditions in lagging U.S. communities.
Many place-based policies have been unsuccessful, failing to deliver cost-effective benefits to disadvantaged communities; meanwhile areas across the county have large and rising concentration of poverty. David Neumark proposes that the federal government subsidize employment in places that are struggling, focusing on nonprofit jobs that contribute to local public goods.
Development economics research has made substantial progress in addressing poverty, poor health and education, and other problems of struggling areas. In this paper, Stephen C. Smith relates findings from the development economics literature to U.S. policy problems, highlighting programs and policies that have the potential to assist lagging areas in the United States.
For a century, the progress our nation made toward realizing broadly shared economic growth gave our economy much of its unparalleled strength. However, for the last several decades, that progress has seemed to stall. On critical measures such as household income, poverty, employment rates, and life expectancy, there exist yawning persistent gaps between the best- and worst-performing communities. These conditions demand a reconsideration of place-based policies. The evidence-based proposals contained in this volume can help restore the conditions of inclusive growth that make it possible for individuals from any part of the country to benefit from economic opportunity.