Financial Incentives

Issue Focus

How Place-Based Employment Programs like Jobs Plus Can Help During the COVID-19 Pandemic

July, 2020

Employment programs situated within public housing developments are facing multiple challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With routine operations disrupted by shelter-in-place orders, programs like Jobs Plus can find creative ways to keep their doors open and their clients engaged.

Issue Focus

Practical Advice from Richard Guare and Colin Guare

June, 2020
Annie Utterback, Gloriela Iguina-Colón, Donna Wharton-Fields

This Issue Focus offers guidance to social service programs seeking to help participants progress toward their goals during the COVID-19 pandemic. Techniques are described for alleviating social isolation, communicating remotely, setting and achieving goals, getting medication, assessing workplace safety, applying for public benefits, working from home, and managing grief.

Issue Focus
May, 2020

Students navigating the COVID-19 pandemic are facing new practical and financial concerns about continuing their studies. Colleges can encourage continued enrollment and boost student success by sending well-designed messages that address those concerns, simplify information, and offer support. This Issue Focus highlights proven strategies for communicating effectively.

Report

Introducing the MyGoals Demonstration

May, 2020

The MyGoals for Employment Success demonstration uses executive skills coaching to help participants with emotional control, stress tolerance, time management, organization, flexibility, and persistence, which are vital to success in the workplace. Research showing that poverty causes stress and impedes these skills informs the approach of this pilot program.

Report

Evaluating the Effects of Santa Clara County Housing Authority’s Rent Reform

April, 2020

Amid a budget crunch, the Santa Clara Housing Authority reduced its subsidies to low-income renters in 2013. This retrospective study shows that the decrease did not affect average employment and earnings over the next four years, as some economic theories might have predicted.

Issue Focus
May, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has heightened the nation’s awareness of the critical role that low-wage workers — cashiers, nursing assistants, delivery people — play in our lives. MDRC’s Cynthia Miller summarizes research about how expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit can effectively supplement their earnings and lead to other positive benefits for them and their families.

Issue Focus

Providing Remote Support Services to College Students

April, 2020

SUCCESS, a comprehensive coaching program designed to improve college graduation rates among low-income students, has quickly transitioned during the pandemic. It is offering virtual advising appointments, adapting meeting topics to include tips for distance learning, and connecting students with local resources including food, health care, and emergency financial aid.

Report

Encouraging Additional Summer Enrollment

April, 2020
Camielle Headlam, Benjamin Cohen, Kayla Reiman

The EASE project demonstrates that it is possible to increase enrollment in summer courses and help students earn more credits using an informational campaign that incorporates behavioral science principles and tuition-assistance grants. Use this handbook to customize and implement your own summer enrollment informational campaign.

Report

Interim Findings from the Paycheck Plus Demonstration in Atlanta

March, 2020
Cynthia Miller, Lawrence F. Katz, Edith Yang, Alexandra Bernardi, Adam Isen, Kali Aloisi

The Earned Income Tax Credit reduces poverty for many low-income families but does little for workers without dependent children. Paycheck Plus, being tested in New York City and Atlanta, offers an expanded credit to this population. This report presents its two-year impacts on employment, earnings, and income in Atlanta.

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