Message from the Director

Katherine A. Magnuson
Katherine A. Magnuson
Katherine A. Magnuson

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

2021 has been a year like no other in many ways. We have continued to learn how to navigate the COVID-dominated landscape, and while vaccines are now available for more and more people of almost all ages, there are still stark differences in how this pandemic has affected people of different racial and economic backgrounds. Through our seminars, podcasts, webinars, and written materials we have worked to bring important policy-relevant research about poverty to a wide audience.

We are very pleased to have been recently named the National Research Center on Poverty and Economic Mobility by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE), the principal advisor to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on development of policy and legislation, strategic planning, policy research and evaluation, and economic analysis.

This new five-year cooperative agreement funds projects and programs designed to improve the effectiveness of public policies that reduce poverty, inequality, and their consequences and that promote economic mobility. In this work, we will establish and expand partnerships to continue building a pipeline of poverty scholars from historically underrepresented groups and support their research.

We also continue to develop and expand the Wisconsin Administrative Data Core (WADC), one of the richest collections of linked state administrative data in the country. This year, we entered data sharing agreements to include data on homelessness as well as state administrative data on job training and worker’s compensation. We continue to work to make these data accessible to poverty scholars doing policy relevant research.

In addition, with support from the JPB Foundation, we expanded our successful Emerging Poverty Scholars program, which supports five early-career scholars of color each year with funding, professional development opportunities, and mentorship.

We look forward to keeping you updated on these programs and more. As 2021 draws to a close, all of us at IRP are grateful for everyone who makes our work possible. If you would like to support our work financially, please follow this link for options to give.


Katherine Magnuson
IRP Director