Research Roundup

Jun 29, 2006

A new Brookings Institution study, Where Did They Go? The Decline of Middle-Income Neighborhoods in Metropolitan America details the increasing financial segegration of families as mixed middle income neighborhoods have increasingly disappeared.  Such segregation has created new challenges in delivering public services and connecting low-income workers with jobs often created in higher-income areas.

Jun 22, 2006

According to a new report by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the nation has made some improvement in providing health insurance in the last few years, with 14.2 percent without coverage in 2005 compared to 15.4 percent in 1997, largely due to greater coverage of children. Still, 41.2 million people still lack health coverage and, coverage in different states ranges from 6 percent without health insurance in Massachusetts to over 24 percent lacking health insurance in Texas.

Jun 15, 2006

Human misery for some is a business opportunity for others, especially if those businsesses are willing to abuse workers they employ, as a new study, Rebuilding After Katrina, details. According to the study by the Payson Center at Tulane, large numbers of workers engaged in the rebuilding lacked needed protective safety equipment, were paid less than promised by contractors, and most had no medical insurance.

Jun 08, 2006
The Urban Institute has analyzed the income and taxes paid by immigrants in the Washington, D.C. area -- and the million immigrants in the region pay $9.8 billion in taxes, about 18% of all taxes paid in the region. Undocumented immigrants paid and estimated $13,000 in taxes per household (19% of household income), which would likely increase substantially if they were given a path to legalization.
Jun 01, 2006
Some good news: the scare numbers on low graduation rates in our high schools are overstated, according to a new study by the Economic Policy Institute.  A much hyped factoid that half of African American and Hispanic students don't graduate from high school is based on bad data.  In fact, the last four decades have seen tremendous progress in increasing high school completion, the best estimates being that 82% of students graduate with a regular diploma with black and Hispanic students showing a 74% graduation rate.   And about half of the students who don't get a regular degree eventually receive a GED, which allows entry into college, the military or other options requiring high school.
May 25, 2006
Venture Funds: State equity funds in 44 states are providing $5.8 billion to promote job growth in the states, according to the National Association of Seed and Venture Funds' State Venture Capital Study. They also break down investments by state.
May 18, 2006

Economic Development: In a boon to legislators and community leaders interested in local economic development, the book The Great American Jobs Scam: Corporate Tax Dodging and the Myth of Job Creation, Good Jobs First's widely acclaimed 2005 book is now available in its entirety free on the web at If you want to know what kinds of corporate deals rip off the taxpayers and how to design policies that create good jobs, this is a great place to start.

May 11, 2006

In a time of rising gas prices, a lot of commuters are asking if that "cheap" housing in a distant suburb is such a bargain, the Center for Transit-Oriented Development and the Center for Neighborhood Technology have created a new tool, "The Affordability Index" that measures the household budget tradeoffs made between housing and transportation costs and the advantages that families living in transit-rich environments gain.