Two-Parent Families

MDRC develops and studies programs that serve low-income two-parent families, some focusing on addressing their workforce and income security needs and others on improving their relationship and parenting skills.

The Latest
Issue Focus

Lawrence Katz explores questions raised by findings from the Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency (BIAS) project: the potential effect of behavioral nudges on long-term outcomes, determining who responds to behavioral nudges but would not otherwise participate in a program, and moving to higher-intensity efforts when low-cost interventions are not enough.

Brief

In child support programs, parents must often make complicated decisions with little information in a highly emotional context. The BIAS project, which applied behavioral insights to human services programs, worked with three states to design eight tests focusing on child support order modifications and collection of payments.

Key Documents
Report

Building on findings that the Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) resulted in higher rates of marital stability among two-parent recipient families who participated in this initiative that provided financial incentives to welfare recipients who worked, this report documents MFIP’s long-term effects on marriage and divorce among participants in the program’s sample of nearly 2,500 two-parent families who were married or cohabiting at study entry.

Report

This report seeks to answer two policy questions: whether providing subsidies to families whose incomes are just over the state’s eligibility limit affects their child care and employment outcomes, and whether extending the length of time before families must reapply for subsidies affects the receipt of subsidies and related outcomes.

Testimony

Presented Before the Science, Technology and Space Subcommittee of the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, United States Senate