Poverty Studies

Low-income Americans are struggling. Poverty has risen, the work participation rate is at its lowest point since the 1970s, and median incomes have stagnated. AEI’s work on poverty seeks to reverse that trend by enhancing opportunity for low-income Americans. From safety net policy to education and family policy, AEI aims to provide pathbreaking work on the root causes of poverty, and the policy changes that most effectively address them. This page contains an up-to-date selection of content from AEI’s scholarly community.

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We find that CPS survey data sharply understate the income of poor households. Underreporting in the survey data also greatly understates the effects of anti-poverty programs and changes our understanding of program targeting, often making it seem that welfare programs are less targeted to both the very poorest and middle income households than they are.

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Senator Sasse, Nebraska’s newly-elected freshman senator, opened AEI’s discussion of the links between family structure and economic growth.

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President Barack Obama speaks with Pope Francis at the Vatican March 27, 2014. Obama highlighted growing gaps between rich and poor ahead of his first meeting on Thursday with Pope Francis, an event that was expected to focus on the fight against poverty and skirt moral controversies over abortion and gay rights. Reuters

Pope Francis is not a politician, but likes a good political dustup. And the Holy Father couldn’t have packed his trip to the United States this month with more politically charged issues.

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Chris Callas Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-2.0)

Human dignity, employment, and community support are integral to successful prisoner reentry.

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We may not know what caused the American dream’s malaise. We may disagree as to the proper cure. But we can agree that an alive-and-well American dream guarantees our kids an equal chance at success.

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Some people do not want government assistance even when eligible. The desire to be independent from government assistance is respectable and policy makers should not try to change that.

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A recent report nicely sums up the uphill battle facing policymakers trying to address poverty and low income in large metropolitan centers.

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In understanding the confusing contours of political and family geography, it looks like both education and ideology matter.

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Emergency food aid provided by the US government to many of the poorest people in the world saves millions of lives every year. It could save millions more if it were run efficiently.

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A bipartisan group in the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is seeking to ensure that Food for Peace Program funds are used in the most efficient way to help millions of people whose lives have been devastated by natural and man-made disasters.

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