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Working and Poor: How Economic and Policy Changes Are Affecting Low-Wage Workers.

Date & time

Jun 9, 2005-Jul 25, 2024, 12:00-3:34 am EDT


Georgetown University Conference Center
Washington, DC

Fourteen papers will be presented by leading economists and other social scientists on the relationship between the macroeconomy, policy changes, poverty rates, and the extent of economic need. The papers, commissioned by the National Poverty Center, utilize the most current available data to explore topics such as:

  • The boom of the 1990s: how fully – and in what ways – were less-skilled persons able to take advantage of this economic expansion? What were the limits to poverty reduction through economic expansion? What effects have other economic changes – such as changes in technology, in trade, or in immigration – brought about for low skilled workers?
  • How has economic expansion and recession interacted with other key indicators of economic well being, such as changes in consumption or debt, or changes in family formation and household structure?
  • How have key areas of policy interacted with macroeconomic changes and affected the well-being of low-wage workers? Papers will discuss tax policy, unemployment insurance, health insurance, and child support policies.


Agenda and conference papers

Full agenda and conference papers.






Sponsors and organizers

The project is supported by funds from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation and by a grant from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation.

The research project and conference are organized for the National Poverty Center by:

Rebecca Blank, Co-director of the NPC and Henry Carter Adams Collegiate Professor and Dean of the Gerald R. Ford School

Sheldon Danziger, Co-director of the NPC and Henry J. Meyer Distinguished University Professor at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy

Robert Schoeni, Associate Director of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, and Associate Professor in the Department of Economics and the Ford School

Participants will include researchers, federal and state policy makers and policy analysts, and practitioners.


About the edited volume

The Russell Sage Foundation will publish the conference papers in 2006, in a volume edited by Blank, Danziger, and Schoeni. The editors' introduction will provide an overview of the research and a discussion of the policy implications of the papers. Two key policy questions are 'What is the role for government policies in offsetting the effects of economic contractions on low-income populations?' and 'What is the role for government policies in sustaining and enhancing the anti-poverty effects of economic growth?'


After the event

See the agenda page to access papers and discussant comments from the conference.



This event is by invitation only. For more details please contact
[email protected]




The NPC's sleeping room block at the conference hotel is limited to speakers and other invited guests. We cannot reserve any rooms for general conference participants, so we encourage you to secure your own accommodations soon.






For more information

Please contact the National Poverty Center at [email protected].






Agenda: (as of May 12)

Thursday, June 9, 2005






Friday, June 10, 2005