urban institute nonprofit social and economic policy research

Income & Benefits Policy Center

woman sketching a chartThe Income & Benefits Policy Center studies how public policy influences the behavior and economic well-being of families, particularly the disabled, the elderly, and those with low incomes. Scholars look at income support, social insurance, tax, child-support, and employee-benefit programs.


Unemployment and Recovery Project

The Unemployment and Recovery project is a three-year research initiative to address the critical unemployment policy challenges facing our country. The project is monitoring and analyzing job creation and employment outcomes over the course of the recovery across groups, regions, and sectors; assessing unemployment's impacts on different population groups, especially the most vulnerable; measuring the effectiveness of public safety net programs for the unemployed and recommending and assessing program and policy changes; and examining workforce development policies and programs and how they are serving the unemployed.

Work and Retirement Patterns for the G.I. Generation, Silent Generation, and Early Boomers: Thirty Years of Change

This study comparing retirement patterns over the past 30 years finds that older adults are now working longer and taking more complex routes out of the labor force. More than 40 percent of men born 1943 to 1947 did not retire by age 65, compared with only 20 percent of those born 1933 to 1937. Men and women born 1933 to 1937 were much more likely than those born 20 years earlier to move to part-time work at older ages and return to work after retiring instead of following the traditional route of retiring only once directly from full-time employment.

Read more about retirement and older Americans


Measuring Poverty at the State Level

This study implements the modern poverty measure for Minnesota using the American Community Survey (ACS) and simulates the potential effects of alternative safety net policies on poverty.  The alternative simulations apply new program rules and behavioral assumptions to recalculate family resources and poverty. The results show the importance of the modern poverty measure for analyzing state policies.

Read more about poverty


Risk and Recovery: Understanding the Changing Risks to Family Incomes

More than 13 percent of nonelderly adults in families with children will see their incomes fall by half at some point over the course of a year, and about 40 percent fully recover within a year.  This paper examines the characteristics and circumstances of families vulnerable to sharp income drops and those most likely to recover financially.

Read more about the safety net



Related UI Research

Find Research on Economy/Taxes
Find Research on Work/Income
Issue in Focus: Disability and Employment
Issue in Focus: Retirement
Issue in Focus: Social Security
Issue in Focus: Tax Reform