IRP Thematic Conference: "Building Human Capital and Economic Potential"

July 16–18, 2014, Madison, WI


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The Institute for Research on Poverty (IRP) at the University of Wisconsin–Madison is collaborating with the University of Texas at Austin Center for Health and Social Policy (CHASP), with the support of the Smith Richardson Foundation, to engage young, emerging scholars, as well as prominent senior scholars who are widely recognized authorities, in conducting their best work on the broad topical question: How can we build economic self-sufficiency among working families and the disadvantaged, while simultaneously meeting the labor demand needs of employers, through policies and programs that increase labor market skills, employment, wages, and earnings? The papers to be presented are listed below (working titles).

July 16: Emerging Scholars Papers

Kevin Stange and Daniel Kreisman (University of Michigan): Does Vocational Course-Taking Ease School-to-Work Transitions? A Dynamic Choice Model

Shaun Dougherty (University of Connecticut): The Role of Career and Technical Education in Promoting Human Capital Accumulation and Bridging Labor-Market Needs: Evidence from Massachusetts

Patrick Sharkey and Joshua Aronson (New York University): Using Mobile Technology to Improve Academic Performance and Persistence among Community College Students

Flavio Cunha (University of Pennsylvania): What Job Characteristics Do Mothers of Very Young Children Value the Most?

Arindrajit Dube (University of Massachusetts, Amherst): Minimum Wages and the Distribution of Family Incomes

July 17 & 18: Leading Scholars Papers

Theme 1: Structural vs. cyclical economic changes, labor demand, and job quality

Jesse Rothstein (University of California, Berkeley): The Great Recession and Its Aftermath: What Role for Structural Changes?

David H. Autor (MIT and NBER), David Dorn (CEMFI), and Gordon Hanson (UC-San Diego and NBER): The Labor Market and the Marriage Market: How Adverse Employment Shocks Affect Marriage, Fertility, and Children's Living Circumstances

Marcus Dillender (W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research), Carolyn Heinrich (University of Texas at Austin) and Susan Houseman : The Potential Effects of Federal Health Insurance Reforms on Employment Arrangements and Compensation

Discussant: Gary Burtless (Brookings)

Theme 2: Income support and safety net strategies and policies

David Neumark (University of California, Irvine): Policy Levers to Increase Jobs and Increase Income from Work after the Great Recession

Dayanand Manoli (University of Texas at Austin) and Nicholas Turner (U.S. Treasury):Cash-on-Hand & College Enrollment: Evidence from Population Tax Data and Policy Nonlinearities

Bradley Hardy (American University), Timothy Smeeding (University of Wisconsin–Madison), and James P. Ziliak (University of Kentucky): The Changing Safety Net for Low-Income Parents and Their Children: Structural or Cyclical Changes in Labor Markets and Income Support Policy?

Discussant: Susan Mayer (University of Chicago, Harris School)

Theme 3: Community colleges, workforce preparation, and employment and training

Harry Holzer (Georgetown University): Is It Worth It? Postsecondary Education and Labor Market Outcomes for the Disadvantaged

Michal Kurlaender and Ann Huff Stevens (University of California, Davis): Career Technical Education and Labor Market Outcomes: Evidence from California Community Colleges

Robert I. Lerman (American University and Urban Institute): Should Public Policies Encourage Employer-Led Training? Can They Do So?

Discussant: Kenneth Troske (University of Kentucky)

Theme 4: Low-wage labor markets and the hard-to-employ

Laura Tach (Cornell University), Sarah Halpern-Meekin (University of Wisconsin–Madison), and Kathryn Edin (Harvard University): Incompatible Pathways to Upward Mobility? A Qualitative Examination of the Earned Income Tax Credit and Higher Education

Marianne Page (University of California, Davis): The Kids Will Be Alright: Long-Term Effects of Growing Up During a Recession

Dan Bloom (MDRC): Enhanced Services and Transitional Jobs for the Hard-to-Employ

Discussant: Melissa Kearney (University of Maryland and Hamilton Project, Brookings)

Richard Murnane (Harvard University)
Katharine Abraham (University of Maryland)